daily meal

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Chicken Chimichurri with Shrimp and Pancetta

Being Italian, I absolutely love pancetta! Pancetta is a type of meat similar to bacon.  It is great to have for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.  I also love cooking with lemons (so I tend to watch Giada on the food network since she is a lemon fanatic).  Once I saw Giada make this dish, I knew I had to try it. However, I gave it my own little twist! And although this dish and its sauce may look a little different, do not be afraid to try it - it is a delicious alternative to just plain old chicken!
 Chicken Chimichurri with Shrimp and Pancetta
-4 to 6 boneless and skinless chicken breast halves
-1 pound of shrimp, peeled and deveined (I used pre-cooked to save some time)
-8 ounces pancetta, cut into cubes
-Zest of 1 lemon
-Oregano for seasoning
-Salt and pepper for seasoning
-Oil for drizzling the pan

Chimichurri Sauce:
-3 cloves garlic, chopped
-1 cup packed fresh parsley leaves
-1/2 cup fresh oregano leaves or 2 tablespoons dried
-1/3 cup red wine vinegar
-1 cup extra virgin olive oil
-3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
-Sprinkle of lemon zest
-Salt and pepper to taste

Prepare the sauce.  Place all ingredients into a blender and puree until all ingredients are mixed well.  The sauce will turn a bright green color.  Take a little taste and add more salt and pepper if needed.  
Once the sauce is done, set it aside (just mix it up a little again right before serving).  Next, prepare the pancetta.  In a lightly oiled pan, cook the pancetta until crisp and place in a strainer with a paper towel.  
Before                                                                              After
Once the pancetta is done, set it aside and begin working on the chicken.  Season it well on both sides with salt, pepper, oregano, and the zest of one lemon. Place in a pan and drizzle with oil.  Cook for 5-7 minutes on each side.  I like to brown my chicken a little more so I usually cook a little longer.  
Since the shrimp takes the least amount of time to cook, I prepare it last, while waiting for my chicken to finish.  Just pour shrimp into a pan with oil (I usually end up using only half of the bag or less since I normally only cook for two, so cook as many shrimp as you'd like).   Just like the chicken, sprinkle the shrimp with salt, pepper, oregano, and lemon zest (if you have any left over).  
Once everything is ready, place the chicken onto a plate and dump the shrimp and pancetta on top.  Give the chimichurri sauce one more little blend, and drizzle over the chicken, shrimp, and pancetta.  This dish is great served by itself, or with a drink such as a lemon drop martini! Enjoy!

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1 comment:

  1. Yummy! This looks delicious! I wish I had this for dinner tonight and of course the lemon drop martini! Mmmmm! :)