A Quick, Impromptu Dinner with Friends

We had the unexpected pleasure of having some good friends stop by just as I was starting to prepare dinner.  It is just as easy to cook for four as it is for two, so instead of setting up only two chairs outside on the deck, we set up four.  When the four of us get together, we always have a great time.  The time just passes by quickly and we never stop talking.  And usually, the wine flows pretty freely as well.   We opened up a bottle of Albarino wine that we bought when we were in Virginia, back in May.  Virginia Ranks #5 in Grape Production for the United States  Our friends Janet and Bob are wine lovers like I am, and we had wanted to share this bottle with them ever since we got back, we just had not had the opportunity to do so until now.   Along with our wine, we had a cool, fresh Mediterranean meal that consisted of a spicy lemon-herb grilled chicken, topped with my yogurt sauce (yes, we had a bit leftover from the other day, but it is all gone now – Gyros with Brisket), vegetable cous-cous, grilled Brussel sprouts in balsamic vinaigrette and warmed pita bread.   It was a cool night, with hardly any bugs, which made it a perfect evening to enjoy out on the deck with good friends, good food and good wine.  I love these quick, impromptu get togethers.  Often times, these are the most fun.


My marinade was made with garlic, red pepper flakes, black pepper, salt, lemon juice, olive oil, parsley, thyme, basil and lemon verbena.  I mixed it all together and let the chicken marinate for about 2 1/2 hours before grilling it.  Like how I cook most of the time, I don’t really measure things, I just cook by instinct, and eyeball how much of things I need to use.  The chicken was very tender and full flavor.


Grilled spicy lemon-herb chicken, grilled Brussel sprouts in balsamic vinaigrette, yogurt sauce, vegetable cous-cous, Albarino white wine.




Spicy Lemon-Herb Chicken

1 heaping TBSP garlic

1-2 tsp each, parsley, basil, thyme, lemon verbena (optional), chopped fine if fresh or dried

1 tsp red pepper flakes, or to taste

1 tsp each salt & pepper

3 TBSP lemon juice

1/2 cup olive oil

1-2 lbs chicken


Mix all the ingredients together and pour over the chicken.  Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2-3 hours.  Then grill the chicken until it is done.



Author: ajeanneinthekitchen

I have worked in the restaurant and catering industry for 35 years. I attended 2 culinary schools in Southern California, and have a degree in culinary arts from the Southern California School of Culinary Arts, as well as a few other degrees in other areas. I love to cook and I love to feed people.

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