Chicken With 40 Garlic Cloves, on a Shoestring

Born in Africa to Dutch parents, Sebastiaan Zijp has lived around the world, but settled in Manhattan where, as executive chef of Bar Blanc Bistro, he specializes in using the freshest local green market ingredients in seasonal dishes.

Zijp worked for renowned chef David Bouley as a chef de cuisine and sous chef at Bouley, and became executive chef for Bar Blanc Bistro in July 0f 2008.

Bar Blanc Bistro was opened in Dec. 2007 by Bouley to rave reviews, and has kept its reputation with Sebastiaan running the kitchen.

Zijp's latest challenge? The role of "Chef on a Shoestring" on "The Early Show"!

As such, he tried to prepare a simple dinner on our stingy budget of just $40. The main course? Chicken with Forty Cloves of Garlic!

He also was automatically entered in our "How Low Can You Go?" competition, in which the "Shoestring" chef with the lowest total ingredients cost will be invited back to cook for our year-end holiday extravaganza!

"Early Show" Recipes Galore!

Simple Arugula Salad
Chicken with Forty Cloves of Garlic
Lemon and Parsley Couscous
Poached Pears with Amaretto Cream


Pecorino: In Italy, cheese made from sheep's milk is known as pecorino. Most of these cheeses are aged and classified as grana (hard, granular and sharply flavored); however, the young, unaged Ricotta pecorino is soft, white and mild in flavor. Aged pecorinos range in color from white to pale yellow and have a sharp, pungent flavor. The best known of this genre is Pecorino Romano, which comes in large cylinders with a hard yellow rind and yellowish-white interior. Other notable pecorinos are Sardo, Siciliano and Toscano. These hard, dry cheeses are good for grating and are used mainly in cooking. They can be used in any recipe that calls for parmesan cheese, especially if a sharper flavor is desired. (Source:

Couscous: A staple of North African cuisine, couscous is granular semolina. Cooked, it may be served with milk as porridge, with a dressing as a salad or sweetened and mixed with fruits for dessert. Packaged precooked couscous is available in Middle Eastern markets and large supermarkets. The name couscous also refers to the famous Maghreb dish in which semolina or cracked wheat is steamed in the perforated top part of a special pot called a couscoussière, while chunks of meat (usually lamb or chicken), various vegetables, chickpeas and raisins simmer in the bottom part. In lieu of a couscoussière, a colander set over a large pot will do. The cooked semolina is heaped onto a platter, with the meats and vegetables placed on top. All diners use chunks of bread to scoop the couscous from this central platter. Couscous varies from country to country - Moroccans include saffron, Algerians like to add tomatoes and Tunisians spice theirs up with the hot-pepper-based harissa sauce. (Source:

Amaretto: A liqueur with the flavor of almonds, though it's often made with the kernels of apricot pits. The original liqueur, Amaretto di Saronno, hails from Saronno, Italy. Many American distilleries now produce their own amaretto. (Source:


Simple Arugula Salad

1 bunch baby arugula
2 radishes
1 bag baby carrots
Juice of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon shaved pecorino cheese
Salt and pepper to taste


Slice the radishes and shave the baby carrots. Toss radishes, carrots, and arugula with the lemon juice and the oil. Season with salt and pepper, top with the shaved pecorino.

For more of Sebastiaan's recipes, go to Page 2.

Chicken with Forty Cloves of Garlic

4 chicken thighs
40 cloves garlic
4 sprigs thyme
1 tablespoon oil
Salt and pepper


Season the thighs well with salt and pepper. Heat a pan to medium high heat and sear the chicken until very dark golden brown. Remove from pan and add garlic, stir until they are lightly browned. Return the chicken to the pan and cover with a lid or tinfoil. Place in a 350ºF oven until cooked. Maybe 22 minutes.

Lemon and Parsley Couscous

1 cup couscous
1.25 cup stock or water
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
Zest of 1 lemon (use the same lemon from the salad)
1 tablespoon olive oil
Pinch of salt


Mix the couscous with the salt, parsley and lemon in a bowl. Bring the stock or water to a boil with the olive oil. Pour the boiling liquid over the couscous, give a quick stir and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Let stand five minutes, fluff with a fork and serve.

Poached Pears with Amaretto Cream

2 Bartlett pears, cut into quarter inch slices
1 cup water
2 tablespoon sugar
1 cinnamon stick
Zest of 1 lemon
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon powdered sugar
1 tablespoon Amaretto di Serrano


Bring the water to a boil along with the sugar, cinnamon and zest. Once boiling, add the pears and turn to a simmer until pears are soft, about 20 min. Mix together heavy cream, powdered sugar and Amaretto and whisk until stiff peaks form. Serve atop the poached pears.

So, how did Sebastiaan do in our "How Low Can You Go?" competition?!

Arugula Salad
arugula $2.50
radishes $1.98
carrots $1.99
lemon $0.50
pecorino cheese $5.49
total $12.46

Chicken with 40 Garlic Cloves
chicken $3.98
garlic $2.64
thyme $1.29
total $7.91

Lemon Parsley Couscous
couscous $2.19
stock $2.79
parsley $2.99
lemon $0.50
total $8.47

Poached Pears
pears $0.94
cinnamon $1.99
lemon $0.50
heavy cream $2.25
powdered sugar $1.29
Amaretto $1.50
total $8.47

Grand total: $37.31

That gets him onto our Leaders Board!!

1. Amanda Freitag $37.17
The Harrison

2. Kelly Liken $37.20
Restaurant Kelly Liken

3. Sebastiaan Zijp $37.31
Bar Blanc Bistro