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Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Best Mediterranean Chicken? - Three Top Contenders Slug it Out

 By: David Lynn


What's the greatest Mediterranean chicken experience?

The Judges have narrowed it down to three heavyweight contenders:

* Pollo al Ajillo - the aromatic Spanish garlic and herb dish - in with a real puncher's chance. * Chicken Parmigiana - The healthy version - lean and fit, ready to rumble. * Chicken Saltimbocca - elegant and refined, yet packed with subtle power.

Let's examine their credentials:

* Pollo al Ajillo:

The result very much depends on the trainer: done well it's full of garlicy power and herb flavours taut and well conditioned with tight crispy skin and bulging tender meat. Done badly it's all flabby flesh and pimply flaccid skin with heavy overdone garlic and tired, out of condition herbs.

* Chicken Parmigiana:

Using the new healthy regime with muscular trimmed down chicken breast grilled to perfection without the use of heavy fats and stodgy breadcrumbs, the old Parmigiana is ready to make a comeback, after being knocked out for being too unhealthy to preform. Flavour packed fresh tomato sauce delivers subtle power and crispy crunchy Parmesan dazzles many an opponent.

* Chicken Saltimbocca:

Will the extra punch delivered by the ham help this dish to the title, or will the subtle, sweet sauce sway the judges? The crisp skin is a real crowd pleaser and the honed thigh muscle has some of the girls swooning. Perhaps it's the chopped fresh tomatoes in the sauce or the aromatic basil leaves that add to its intensity. Or is it the perfect coming together of trainer and contender on the night?

As the bell sounds for the end of the competition there's an anxious wait as the judges peruse their scorecards, and then the referee goes towards the Saltimbocca. He tucks in his napkin and - yes, begins to eat. The Spanish judge walks straight up to the Pollo al Ajillo and helps himself to a generous portion, while the Italian judge tucks in to a plate of Chicken Parmiagani with obvious relish.

When they have finished eating the scorecards are totted up and - Ladies and Gentlemen we have a result. The Saltimbocca wins by a single point and the Pollo al Ajillo and Chicken Parmiagani have fought themselves to a standstill and an honorable draw.

What a result - everyone is happy and there are no losers - Long live Mediterranean Chicken!

David Lynn shares his favorite chicken parmigiana recipe on his site at

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