A Splash Of Lemon Adds Zing

Diana Helfand
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Wednesday - October 22, 2008
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Just in time for this exciting political season, Bill Ogilvie plays Richard Nixon in Manoa Valley Theatre’s upcoming Frost/Nixon, the second play in MVT’s exciting 40th anniversary season.

Ogilvie remembers Nixon’s presidency vividly. He also remembers the monumental post-Watergate interviews by playboy British talk-show host David Frost - the interviews that resulted in a defiant Nixon finally apologizing to the world and which are the subject of the play. In preparation for the role, Ogilvie has watched the tapes and studied the ways Nixon thinks and feels, but he’s not planning a simple Nixon impersonation. Instead, he plans to put his heart and soul into the character.

Bill is a versatile educator and has taught at schools all over Hawaii. He also is an actor, singer, director and drama coach, whose credits include TV and film (Lost and Baywatch Hawaii, to name two). He says he is thrilled to be playing the role of one of America’s most controversial presidents in a subject that is very close to his heart.


Bill also is inspired to put his all into the role because, as a local high school teacher, he realizes that “some people don’t even know who Nixon was.”

Bree Bumatai, Ogilvie’s director in Frost/Nixon, says Ogilvie is “one of Hawaii’s best actors. He’s perfect for the role - in fact, this may well be the role of his lifetime.”

This nail-biting political drama has the momentum of a thriller and the zing of a comedy (it soon will be released as a major motion picture by director Ron Howard) and will be onstage at Manoa Valley Theatre Nov. 12-30.

I would like to dedicate this column to a man who gives back to the community in out-standing ways.

The Arabs introduced the lemon to Spain in the 11th century, and the Crusaders returning from Palestine were largely responsible for spreading it across the rest of Europe. It was not until the 15th century that Western Europeans began to use lemons in cooking.

High in vitamin C, this yellow citrus fruit was used as a cure and preventive for scurvy. In the 1849 California Gold Rush, miners were willing to pay exorbitant sums for a single lemon. Because of the demand, lemon trees were planted in great numbers.

This dish is great served with linguine or over brown rice and a green salad with fat-free vinaigrette dressing.


TANGY CHICKEN FRANCESE

* 1 pound thin-sliced chicken breast cutlets

* salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

* 4 egg whites (beaten until frothy)

* 1/2 cup unbleached all-purpose flour

* 1/2 cup low-sodium fat-free chicken broth

* 1/4 cup dry white wine

* 2 to 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (to taste)

* 2 tablespoons olive oil

* 1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

* lemon wedges

Place the chicken cutlets between two sheets of plastic wrap. With a meat pounder or mallet, gently pound the slices to about a 1/4-inch thickness. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.

Spread flour on a plate. Dip cutlets in the flour, then in egg. Spread oil in bottom of pan to coat and heat until hot. Add chicken and brown on both sides until cooked through (about 2-3 minutes per side). Transfer the chicken to a plate and keep warm. Repeat with the remaining chicken.

While chicken is cooking, mix the broth, wine and lemon juice in a measuring cup or bowl.

When all of the chicken is done, add broth mixture to the pan. Raise the heat and cook, scraping the bottom of the pan, until the sauce is slightly thickened. Stir in the parsley. Return the chicken pieces to the skillet and turn them once or twice in the sauce.

Serve immediately with lemon wedges.

Makes four servings.

Approximate Nutrition Information Per Serving:

Calories: 350
Fat: 9 grams
Cholesterol: 70 milligrams
Sodium: 80 milligrams (will vary depending on salt added)

(Diana Helfand, author of “Hawaii Light and Healthy” and “The Best of Heart-y Cooking,” has taught nutrition in the Kapiolani Community College culinary arts program.)

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