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This healthy salad, from Larousse Salades Repas, gains its proteins from two sources, lean grilled chicken and boiled chickpeas, making it doubly beneficial for those who have been prescribed a high protein diet. Consuming fruits and vegetables has long been associated with a reduced risk of many lifestyle-related health conditions. Chickpeas are cheap and easily bought in bulk; soak them in water overnight until plump and soft. They will be a handy add-on to your salads and mains once prepared and stored in air tight containers where they will keep for months in your deep-freeze compartment. Choose the boiled stuff over the canned product to reduce sodium levels in your diet. The green ingredient in this salade composée is not my favorite but rocket [arugula] works well here, almost harmoniously, along with basil and cherry tomatoes. If you still prefer to do without it or are unable to find any in your, simply substitute with any mélange of crunchy salad leaves from your local market.

CHICKEN, CHICKPEA & ROCKET SALAD

Ingredients:

600g chicken breasts

5 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon ground pepper

1 teaspoon kitchen salt

400g chickpeas, drained

100g rocket salad leaves

1 small red onion, sliced

12 cherry tomatoes, halved

2 tablespoons basil leaves

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 garlic clove, minced

Method:

  • Preheat grill or oven to 350oF. Coat chicken with 1-2 tablespoon oil and season with salt and pepper.

  • Grill the chicken for 5 minutes on each side until cooked. Remove it from grill, cover and cool slightly.

  • Cut chicken diagonally into thick regular slices. In a salad bowl, combine chickpeas, rocket and onion.

  • Add tomato halves, basil leaves and cooked chicken. Season it with salt and pepper according to taste.

  • Mix remaining oil with lemon juice and garlic in a small bowl. Drizzle over salad, toss gently and serve.

Chicken, Chickpea & Rocket Salad

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Here’s a quick dinner idea using basic kitchen ingredients by TheSlowRoastedItalian. No need to waste time over marinade or gravy; simply pop the chicken into the oven along with a few slices of lemon and a sprig of rosemary while you forget the stress of a long day with a good body scrub followed by a refreshing shower. You now simply have to put together a bowl of green salad and some carbs [bread, fries or pasta] before announcing “Dinner’s ready, folks!”

LEMON & ROSEMARY ROAST CHICKEN

Ingredients:

1 to 2 medium lemons, sliced

2 sprigs fresh rosemary

2 garlic cloves, quartered

1 pound boneless chicken breasts

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon kosher salt or kitchen salt

1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 425°F. Layer half of the lemon slices and rosemary on the bottom of a baking dish.

  • Scatter half of garlic around the pan. Season both sides of uncooked chicken with salt and pepper.

  • Lay chicken on top of lemon rosemary bed. Place remaining lemon slices on top of chicken breasts.

  • Place rosemary sprig between chicken. Sprinkle with remaining garlic. Drizzle chicken with olive oil.

  • Bake for 25 to 30 minutes until chicken is cooked through. Cover with aluminum foil for 5 minutes.

  • Cook until chicken and lemon are browned. Serve with fresh bread and green salad. For 2 persons.

Lemon & Rosemary Chicken

Farfalle or bow ties are among my favorite pasta shapes, not only because they look like dainty little butterflies on a plate, but also because they cling well to rich sauces like this creamy tomato sauce from BBC GoodFood.  A good bowl of al dente pasta soaking up the deliciousness of a simple, warm sauce will rate as the ultimate comfort food on any gloomy, rainy day. This specially holds true when you come back tired [or not] from work and have no energy to cook something fancy or drive yourself to a restaurant where pasta dishes are frightfully overpriced. It will take you all of 15 minutes to conjure this dinner-for-one from scratch although you can easily double, triple or quadruple the recipe to accommodate any family size you ought to feed. I promise that even your picky eaters will forget their temper tantrums and happily tuck in, hence providing more than one harried mother with a much needed break.

FARFALLE WITH CREAMY TOMATO SAUCE

Ingredients:

1 tablespoon butter

1 garlic clove, chopped

1/4 cup tomato puree

1/4 cup pasta water

100g farfalle pasta

75 g roasted chicken

1/4 cup cooking cream

1 small bunch flat leaf parsley

1/2 teaspoon ground pepper

1/2 teaspoon dried basil

2 tablespoons parmesan

Method:

  • Heat butter in a small saucepan and fry chopped garlic gently until golden. Stir in the tomato puree.

  • Season and simmer for 5 minutes. While the sauce is cooking, boil the pasta in a pan of salted water.

  • Cook until tender for 8-10 minutes. Transfer to a colander and drain, reserving pasta water for later.

  • Add the cream to tomato sauce, then throw in roasted chicken and cooked pasta and mix well to coat.

  • Cook for a few minutes until the sauce bubbles. Add a splash of pasta water to thin sauce, as desired.

  • Sprinkle chopped fresh parsley, ground pepper and dried basil over cooked pasta and stir to combine.

  • Serve it right away with shavings of parmesan cheese. Makes 1 large serving for a very hungry person.

Ultimate Comfort Food

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