Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Lemonade.... Chicken?

My car was telling me it is 85' outside. A hot dinner did not sound appetizing. Neither did cooking it. But hubby brought home groceries... and I asked for chicken (although I only needed to cook it so I could make a cold chicken pasta salad another night this week). So tonight I was going to find something easy & traditional to do with the chicken.

After leafing through Martha Stewart's Everyday Food, I ran across a recipe for Braised Chicken with Orange and Scallions. Unfortunately, I didn't have all the ingredients -you will start to notice this is a theme with all of my cooking- and I was craving lemonade. So I decided to adapt and here's what I came up with.

4 chicken breasts (or 1 chicken cut into 10 pieces)
coarse salt
lemon pepper from grinder
1/2 bunch scallions, trimmed & halved
3 small bunches bok choi, trimed & halved
1/2 real lemon juice
1/2 cup Simply Lemonade (or whatever lemonade you have)

1. Preheat oven to 450'. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking, about 1 minute. Season chicken with salt. Swirl oil in skillet. Working in batches if needed, add chicken, skin side down, and brown on one side, about 5 minutes (mine was skinless and I browned for 3 minutes, so it wasn't too tough).

2. Turn chicken, skin side up, and season with salt and lemon pepper, add scallions, bok choi and juice to skillet. Transfer to oven and cook until chicken is cooked through, 15-20 minutes. (I cooked 10 minutes and let sit with lid on for another 5 minutes and all was cooked through, moist and tender)

I plated this on top of a bed of garlic infused, buttered rice. Added a bit of the juices and just a drizzle of soy sauce. I like all of my dinner dishes to have a full range of protein, starch/carb and veggie. Bok choi was more of a garnish and it was too hot to think about cooking anything else, so reached into the refrig. for some coleslaw I made a few days ago. Wallah, done!

It can be really tough to get a 2 year old to eat. As toddler was running around the room, probably spinning from the lemonade he begged for when I was cooking, he managed to get a good handful of rice and chicken into his tummy. Baby couldn't get enough and insisted on grabbing the fork out of my hands so she could feed herself.

After all are full, I've saved the largest breast and a half for the cold chicken pasta I will make later this week... Leftover rice, great for baby & I'm hoping I have extra meat this week to make some fried rice!

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