Saturday, 16 January 2010
I have made no secret of my love of lemons. If I had to choose between chocolate and lemon . . . I think I'd choose lemon every time . . . although in all honesty, it would be a real dilema for me, coz I really like chocolate as well!
I think lemons are slightly better for you though, and not quite as hard on the hips.
I love chicken too. When properly cooked, chicken can be a real treat! A lot of the time it can end up overcooked, dry and tasteless . . . especially the breast meat. You really need to watch it carefully. There is nothing worse than boomerang tough chicken . . .
Back in Canada when we would go out for dinner I always loved to order Lemon Chicken. Sometimes they got it right, sometimes they didn't. To me, great lemon chicken should be moist, and tangy with full on lemon flavour, tempered with some sweetness that doesn't detract from the dish as a whole. You want just the right mix of crisp outside crust on the chicken with deliciously moist insides, and a wonderfully tangy sweet sauce that tastes just right.
This chicken is exactly that. If you follow my timings exactly you will be rewarded with one yummily moreish chicken dish! This recipe is the keeper of all keepers. Your family will bow down to you and hail you as the chicken master. Seriously.
Moist and tender chicken breasts in a lucious honey lemon sauce. What's not to like?
4 large boneless chicken breasts
5 TBS fresh lemon juice
50g of flour
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp paprika
2 TBS softened butter
3 TBS extra virgin olive oil
2 unwaxed lemons, sliced into 1/4 inch thick slices
4 TBS brown sugar
3 TBS liquid honey
1 cup chicken stock
Lightly butter a 9 by 13 inch glass baking dish. Set aside.
Place the lemon juice into a bowl. Add the chicken, turning it around to coat. Allow to sit for about 15 minutes.
Shake the flour, salt and paprika together in a large plastic bag.
Remove the chicken pieces from the lemon juice. Save the juice left in the bowl for a bit later. Shake the chicken in the bag with the flour.
Heat the butter and the olive oil together in a large nonstick skillet. Add the chicken pieces and cook them on both sides until golden brown. Place the browned chicken breasts, right side up, in the prepared baking dish. Cover them with the sliced lemons. Sprinkle evenly with the brown sugar.
Pre-heat the oven to 190*C/375*F. Add the chicken stock and leftover lemon juice to the pan drippings. Cook and stir, scraping with a wooden spoon to get up all the tasty brown bits. Add 2 TBS of the honey and bring to the boil. (Save 1 TBS for a bit later on) Simmer until slightly thickened. Pour the sauce into a corner of the baking dish and then give it a jiggle to distribute the sauce over the bottom and around the breasts, without disturbing the lemon slices. Cover tightly with foil wrap and then place the chicken into the heated oven. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven. Baste with the pan juices and recover and return to the oven for another 10 minutes. Remove from the oven. Discard the foil wrap. Baste again. Drizzle the remaining TBS of honey over the lemon slices and return the dish to the oven and bake for a further 10 to 15 minutes until the chicken is done, tender and sticky yummy!
This goes really well with some basamati rice which you have cooked with a bit of stock and saffron. Fork through some plumped sultanas and chopped cashew nuts for texture. Delicious!!