Thursday, June 4, 2020

Making Chicken Dijon At Home!

There's one meal that Alli has been asking for us to make at home ever since we started this whole series.
Alli - Please can we have Chicken Dijon?
It seems like every week, a few times a week, she'll ask if we can make Chicken Dijon. Well lucky for you little girl, tonight is your night.

When we go there, Theresa and I both order big plates and the four of us split them. There's a few things that we're going to have to recreate if we're going to make this at home.
The first is their delicious Garlic Sauce. To do that, first we're going to need a lot of garlic. Theresa broke apart a garlic bulb and shook them hard to release the skins.

Not bad, but still a little more work to do. She grabbed a ziplock bag and whacked them on the counter a few times and that did a much better job. But still she's saying that her fingers are going to smell like garlic for the rest of the day.

Back when we were doing Olive Garden night at home, I kneaded the pasta dough for 30 minutes. Tonight is going to be Theresa's exercise in patience. The Garlic Sauce is an emulsification and the goal is to add things slowly so it doesn't break. It's recommended to chill the oil in the freezer and you are supposed to add it extremely slowly. So slow that it's supposed to take 15 minutes to drizzle in 3 cups of oil. And after every cup you add chilled water and lemon juice.

Success! It didn't break! It's going into the fridge for a while for the flavors to meld together.

The next thing we're going to have to have if we're recreating Chicken Dijon is Gyro meat. Theresa found a recipe for Gyros, and it starts with ground pork and ground beef.

There's not very much in the way of spices. Fresh ground pepper, Kosher salt, Rosemary, and Marjoram. I can't say I know what Marjoram tastes like, but luckily we had some in the cabinet. It smells floral.

I pulsed the spices in the smaller food chopper.

Theresa pulverized half an onion in the larger food processor. No tears when you're using food processor, but as soon as you open up the lid, it'll make you tear up.

The goal is to reduce the liquid in these onions, so we put them in a cloth and twisted them until they were dry.

Afterwards, everything goes back into the food processor. Things get mixed together for about 1 minute.

Until it turns into a paste.

We don't have a rotisserie broiler here like they might have at a real gyro place, so we're going to have to take a couple extra steps. First the meat is spread in a pan, and placed in a water bath.

325 degrees and one hour later, this giant burger patty is the result.

You're supposed to put it on a cooling rack, cover it with foil, and put a weight on top of it. I'm unsure why, but, we'll follow the recipe and see what happens.

And short of having an electric knife, or a meat shaver, I did my best cutting gyro pieces into thin slices.

And then finally back to the stovetop to brown the outsides a little more.

Let's eat! Alli was running in and out of the kitchen to check our progress. And she reminded us that for our drinks we have to have water with lemon, because that's what we always get when we go to the real Chicken Dijon.

I think the gyro meat turned out really well.

We bought Pita from Sams to have with our meal. The garlic sauce goes really well with it. Actually the garlic sauce goes well with everything. We've got hummus as well.

The yellow saffron rice is a staple from Chicken Dijon too.

Fries are just one of those side dishes they happen to have there and they're always tasty.

Oh, and I also grabbed a rotisserie chicken from Sams also. That'll go great with our meal.
Smile everyone!

I asked Alli what her favorite thing at Chicken Dijon is.
Alli - All of it.
She likes taking a piece of pita, and putting every single thing from her plate on top of it.

Then she makes a sandwich.

She is loving this.

Ian is a big fan of the gyro meat and the hummus. We've noticed that when Ian enjoys the food, he makes "Mmm, mmm" noises as he's eating.

For reference, here's a few pictures from the Chicken Dijon, just for reference. Pita cut into quarters with garlic sauce, rotisserie chicken, yellow rice, gyro meat, and broccoli veggies that Alli just loves.

That is a good looking plate right there. It's a little bit of everything.

And Theresa did a great job on that garlic sauce. When we're at the restaurant, we have to portion control it because they only give you one small container per pita. Here though, we can go crazy. There's plenty of garlic sauce.

So when Richard makes a gyro, he can slather it up with lots of garlic sauce.

Nice work T.

Chi's favorite part of the meal was the garlic sauce too.

Alli topped off her broccoli with rice. She loves combining her foods.

The last one at the table, Alli. She's getting as much of this kind of food as possible. She already ate through an entire pita by herself. Everyone had done a pretty good job cleaning out the bowl of gyro meat, but Alli pointed at it and asked "Can I have those three pieces?"
Those tiny little pieces? Um, sure.
Alli - And some more pita?
You got it girl.
So what's the verdict everyone? Who did it better?
It was unanimous. Everyone thought making it at home turned out better than eating out. It was delicious!


  1. That was quite a meal...making that garlic sauce really took patience (15 mins to pour the arm wouldn't last that long!)...even the gyro took several steps from start to finish. But the final results were definitely worth the effort (Alli would "triple" that :-) ) Ian's way of savoring his food (and closing his eyes at times, too). Looks like the garlic sauce was a BIG hit! Alli wore a pretty yellow Minnie top just to match the saffron rice :-) After all these "At Home" meals the family may not want to visit another restaurant again (or not for a long while, at least)! EOM

    1. The garlic sauce lasts for a long time in the fridge, so it's still being used on other things not even related to Chicken Dijon. I bet we could figure out a way to make it automated, but what's the fun in that.
      All this staying at home is certainly saving money from eating out. And we're flexing our kitchen skills too!

  2. Looks amazing!what a great idea. Just a side note C.D. garlic sauce is actually potatoe based. Who knew right? Its made with dried potatoe flakes. The rest of the ingredients i believe you were right on the money tho!

    1. Really? Does that help it from breaking? You wouldn't have a recipe would you? That garlic sauce is so good!

  3. Oh my gosh, thank you for posting this! I moved away from California and all the family craves is Chicken Dijon, primarily the garlic sauce! I will need to try this!