Happy New Year to you! I hope your holidays were as lovely (albeit gluttonous) as mine were. Mitch and I lithely hopped onto a plane to Utah to spend a few weeks with family, and then basically rolled off the plane back here in Minnesota again. Did any of you feel like that? Like you never, ever wanted to see food ever again, in your whole entire life? EVER?!! Just me? Okay.
Well, in case, like me, you did feel like you had a food overload, and you’re looking for some lighter, healthier fare to start your year off, I thought I’d post a few healthier recipes to put that spring back in our step again. And this first one, isn’t so much a recipe, as it is a super simple, healthy trick to make the most flavorful, juicy, delicious chicken ever! And the best part about it? You can use this chicken in practically anything! I love to toss it on a salad or throw it in some pasta. Or, you can just enjoy it alongside some rice or veggies. You’ll die at how easy it is.
This is all you do:
Start by butterflying your chicken breasts (lay the chicken breast flat on a cutting board, place your hand on top of the chicken, and cut it in half, with the knife parallel to your cutting board). This makes each piece thinner and will help it to cook more evenly. One chicken breast will serve about two people.
Use a paper towel to pat each piece dry on both sides. This helps to remove extra moisture and will help the chicken to brown.
Now, this is important here: you MUST use FRESH garlic for this next step! In fact, do yourself a favor and just throw away the bottled stuff. Promise me? Fresh is the way to go here! It’s so much more flavorful, and will really give your cooking an extra umph. Crush your garlic cloves in a garlic press, like this one here. If you don’t have one, you should seriously consider getting one. I use mine ALL the time, and they’re pretty inexpensive.
Using your fingers, rub the crushed garlic all over both sides of your chicken breasts. For accounting purposes, I probably used 1-2 garlic cloves per chicken piece (yeah, I know that’s a lot of garlic, but trust me here). Besides, is there such a thing as too much garlic? I say nay.
Once completed coated in garlic, sprinkle each side generously with kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper.
Next, heat up some olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, lay each chicken piece down and cook for a few minutes on each side. Be really, really careful not to overcook it! There’s almost nothing more distressing than cutting into a piece of chicken and finding that you overdid it. The garlic will blacken up quite a bit, but not to worry, it makes a really nice crust and packs a ton of flavor.
Once cooked through, remove to a plate, cover in tin foil, and let the chicken rest for just a couple of minutes to allow all the juices to sort of collect back into the meat. Slice the chicken into bite-sized pieces and lay it on top of a green salad, or toss it in with some pasta, or just serve it with some veggies. It’s seriously delicious.
How would YOU serve it? I wanna hear your ideas!