Last week was cool and rainy, this week is hot, humid, and sunny... that's what you get with Midwest weather and I'm loving it! (well, the hot and sunny part at least) We found a new twist on the 'same old' grilled chicken, added fresh tomatoes with mozzarella and sweet corn on the cob and once we were done, said "Now that's what I call a summer meal!"
Even after only marinading for 30 minutes, the chicken had great flavor and was really moist. The basil dressing was so fresh and was an awesome addition. It was a perfect match with the tomatoes and mozzarella drizzled in olive oil and sprinkled with salt and pepper.
Give this one a try and I guarantee you'll be glad it's summertime, too!
Grilled Chicken with Basil Dressing
2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, plus 1/4 cup
1 1/2 teaspoons fennel seeds, coarsely crushed
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
3 bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts
1 cup lightly packed fresh basil leaves
1 large garlic clove
1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
Whisk 1/3 cup of oil, 3 tablespoons of lemon juice, fennel seeds, 3/4 teaspoon of salt, and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper in a resealable plastic bag. Add the chicken and seal the bag. Massage the marinade into the chicken. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes and up to 1 day, turning the chicken occasionally.
Meanwhile, blend the basil, garlic, lemon peel, remaining 1/4 cup lemon juice, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper in a blender until smooth. Gradually blend in the remaining 1/3 cup oil. Season the basil sauce, to taste, with more salt and pepper, if desired.
Prepare the barbeque for medium-high heat or preheat a grill pan over medium-high heat. Remove chicken from the marinade. Discard the marinade. Grill the chicken until just cooked through, about 8 minutes per side. Transfer the chicken to serving plates, drizzle with the basil sauce and serve.
I used boneless, skinless chicken breasts rather than bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts and thighs. Just adjust the grilling time accordingly. Even though it was just two of us, I made the 6 pieces because it's never a bad idea to have grilled chicken on hand... especially if you have leftover basil dressing to go with it!
Like I said, we paired ours with juicy tomatoes and fresh mozzarella. Just slice both in about the same thickness of pieces, layer, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with s&p.
We also had sweet corn on the cob and, after realizing we were a little behind the ball for putting it on the grill, I remembered a quick and easy way to cook corn that my aunt taught me (thanks Aunt Sass!). Spread each ear of corn with butter and season with salt & pepper. Wrap each ear in wax paper and place in a microwave-safe dish. Microwave on high for 2 minutes per ear of corn - so if you have 4 ears, microwave it for a total of 8 minutes. Rotate the ears a few times while cooking... and be careful not to burn yourself, those puppies get hot!