A Sarcastic Appetite

Tarragon Chicken & Sauteed Zucchini with Almonds and Basil
March 2, 2011, 7:33 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

Inexplicably, I have friends who look to me as some kind of “authority” on food solely because I have a blog – like I actually know what I’m doing or something. It was for this reason that I found myself at my friends’ apartment on Monday night, cooking dinner for them and assuring them that, really, they can do this too. Then I dropped an empty pot, which clattered onto the floor and probably woke the neighbors below, and kind of melted one of their baking sheets. That’s me, knowing what I’m doing!

Honestly though, despite my clumsiness and inability to time things correctly (almost burning the side dish before the chicken was cooked through), this one really is a no-brainer. The chicken gets broiled, which makes quick work of things, and the side dish – sauteed zucchini with almonds and basil, which comes from Smitten Kitchen via the Red Cat, is really excellent. I stirred in a bunch of basil at the end and converted even the (lone) zucchini-hater at the table.

My friends claim dinner was delicious – or are they just saying that because they know I have a blog?



Broiled Mustard Tarragon Chicken Breasts

Adapted from Alexandra’s Kitchen. Serves 2.

The sauce for the chicken is so delicious, I wanted more to drizzle over the chicken, even if it was only room temperature. The key, as Alexandra notes, is to use a lot of tarragon – more than you’d think. It’s a mild herb, so don’t be afraid of going overboard.

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

3-4 Tbsp. chopped fresh tarragon

2 Tbsp. dijon mustard

3 Tbsp. mayonnaise

juice of 1/2 a lemon

lots of salt and pepper

Preheat the broiler to high. Oil a rimmed baking pan with olive oil. Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper on both sides. In a small bowl, mix the remaining ingredients; taste, and correct for seasoning. Smear less than half of the mixture on each breast, then broil for about 4 minutes. Flip the chicken, smear the rest of the mixture on the other side, then broil for 4-5 more minutes or until cooked through (depending on your broiler and your chicken and all that, you may need more time). Serve with the zucchini and almonds; recipe below.

Sauteed Zucchini with Almonds & Basil

Adapted from the Smitten Kitchen, who had it at the Red Cat. Serves 4ish.

I used way more sliced almonds than the recipe calls for, because I love them. The basil is also an addition. Just wait until the chicken’s done before you throw this together – there’s no need to freak out about cooking two things correctly when you can just freak out about only one.

3 zucchini, cut into matchsticks if you can swing it, or sliced in half-moon shapes if you can’t

2 Tbsp. olive oil

1/3 c. sliced blanched almonds

lots of salt and pepper

lots of fresh basil, torn

Heat a large saute pan on medium heat. Add the olive oil; let it get hot but not smoking. Add the almonds and cook, stirring frequently, until golden brown. Add the zucchini, salt and pepper, and stir, just until the zucchini is heated through. If you’ve chopped them into matchsticks, it will take a hot minute; if you’ve sliced them into half-moons, it’ll take a bit longer. Once everything is warmed through, remove from heat and stir in the fresh basil.

1 Comment so far
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Yum! Keep the chicken coming!

Comment by Jacque

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