Tag Archives: onion

Strawberry Balsamic Chicken with Grilled French Onion Packets.

We swapped blogs instead of recipes for this week’s swap.  I was paired up with Cheesecurd in Paradise.  I’ve made some of Ashley’s recipes before and they were delicious, so I was really excited to browse through her blog and pick the perfect recipe (plus, she’s a fellow Midwesterner (albeit a Packers fan), so how could she possibly steer me wrong?).

The weather here in Chicago has been beyond gorgeous, which is so untypical for March.  Last week, the Husby cleaned out the grill and we’ve been having delectable grilled fare ever since.  Luckily, Ashley has a bunch of amazing recipes for the grill on her site, it took me a while to narrow it down to just one, so I gave a few ideas to the Husby and let him decide which sounded best.  I think he was thrilled to get some sort of say in the food I make for him, ha!

He ultimately chose this recipe for Strawberry Balsamic Chicken with Grilled French Onion Packets, and I’m so glad that he did.  The marinade for the chicken was so good, I kept sneaking spoonfuls (pre-chicken, obviously).  While marinating, I couldn’t stop thinking about it, so I reduced it into a sauce to serve over the chicken as well.  It would also make an incredible salad dressing!  Droooooool.

The chicken was incredibly moist and flavorful, and the sauce, well you know how I feel about it.

We also really loved the onions.  They were super soft and sweet due to the extended time on the grill, and the French onion flavor had me swooning and eating the leftovers off of the Husby’s plate.

Strawberry Balsamic Chicken with Grilled French Onion Packets – adapted slightly from Cheesecurd in Paradise

For the Chicken:

  • 8 Strawberries, tops removed
  • 1/4 Cup Olive Oil
  • 1/4 Cup Balsamic Vinegar
  • 1 Shallot, minced
  • 1/2 tsp. Salt
  • 1/2 tsp. Pepper
  • 1 Tbsp. Honey
  • 4 Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts

Combine all ingredients except the chicken in a medium bowl and blend using an immersion blender until fairly smooth.  Don’t have an immersion blender?  You can use a regular blender or a food processor instead.

Place the chicken into a large Ziploc back and pour the marinade on top.  Allow to marinate for at least an hour.  Remove chicken and grill over medium high heat until cooked completely.

While the chicken is on the grill, pour the remaining marinade into a saucepan.  Bring to a boil then simmer, stirring constantly 5-10 minutes.  If the sauce is too thick, add about 1/4 Cup white wine.  Serve over the chicken.

For the Onions:

  • 2 Large Sweet Onions
  • 2 Beef Bouillon Cubes
  • 4 Tbsp. Salted Butter
  • Fresh Ground Black Pepper

Peel the onions and chop of the tops and bottoms.  Cut out a small pocket in the center and place the bouillon cube inside.  Top with the butter and season with pepper.

Wrap each onion in foil, twisting at the top to create a seal.  Grill over medium heat on the top rack for 30-40 minutes, until onions are soft and the bouillon has dissolved.

French Onion Soup.

Uh, so yeah.  I’ve seriously been slacking on my Eleven in ’11 list.  This french onion soup marks only the fourth item conquered from my list, and with only ten days left of 2011, it looks as though I’m going to have to spend the rest of this year in the kitchen if I want to complete my goal.  Eek!

French onion soup is one of my all time favorite foods.  I have to order it whenever it’s listed on a menu, no matter how hot it might be outside.  As simple as it is, there’s something so comforting about a big bowl of steamy hot soup topped with a crouton and smothered in cheese.

As much as I love it, I’d been dreading making it at home.  Not because it seemed difficult to do (it’s quite easy, actually), but more so because it’s incredibly time consuming.  It took at least twice as long to complete each step than what was stated in the original recipe (but luckily, I had read through a bunch of the comments which also reflected that, so I was prepared).  With a five star rating and over 400 reviews, I knew it would be good.  I upped the number of onions called for since I wanted to make sure they were the focus of the soup, and I kept the bay leaves in until the soup was ready to be served.  The end result was so incredibly delicious, it was worth every second spent making it.  The only change I’d make next time (because yes, there will be a next time!) is to buy more cheese so that it oozes over the sides of the bowl.  That’s the best part!!

French Onion Soup – slightly adapted from Tyler Florence

  • 1 Stick Unsalted Butter
  • 6 Yellow Onions, thinly sliced
  • 5 Garlic Cloves, chopped
  • 2 Fresh Bay Leaves
  • 4 Sprigs Fresh Thyme
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste
  • 1 Cup Pinot Noir (or your favorite red wine)
  • 3 Heaping Tbsp. Flour
  • 2 Quarts Beef Broth
  • 1 Baguette, sliced and toasted
  • 1/2 Lb. Gruyere, grated

Heat a large pot over medium and melt the butter.  Add the onions, garlic, bay leaves, thyme and salt and pepper.  Cook until the onions are very soft and caramelized and turn golden brown in color, about 45 minutes.

Add the wine, bring to a boil then reduce heat to low.  Simmer until the wine has evaporated and the onions are dry, about 10 minutes.  Remove the thyme sprigs from the pot and scrape the leaves back onto the onions.  Add the flour and stir until the onions are covered.  Cook for 10 minutes, then add the beef broth.  Return to a simmer then partially cover the pot and allow to simmer 1-2 hours.  Remove bay leaves.

Turn on the broiler.  To serve, ladle soup into individual oven safe bowls placed on a baking sheet.  Add a toasted baguette slice to each bowl then top with a mound of gruyere.  Keeping a watchful eye, broil 1-2 minutes until cheese is melted, brown and bubbly.