Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Mom! What's for Dinner?!

Ahhh, the age-old question.  And sometimes it's not just the kids or your husband asking the question. More often than not, you're asking yourself the very same question! (Though you probably don't call yourself "mom" when you talk to yourself)

Depending on the day, your pantry, and your creativity, sometimes the answer to that question is a good answer and sometimes it's a bad answer.  :)

Well, I had a day like that last week.  I knew I had plenty of ingredients in my pantry, fridge, and freezer, but I didn't exactly know what I wanted to make for dinner.

I knew I wanted to try an easy rice pilaf recipe that I had found.  Plus, I figured that some kind of chicken would pair well with the rice.  So, I looked through a few cookbook indexes under "chicken" and found my answer for the evening...Chicken with Creamy Dijon Sauce.  Ahhhh, so pantry friendly.

So, without further adieu, let me share my recipe find with you!

Chicken with Creamy Dijon Sauce


4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
Cooking spray
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 cup light mayonnaise (or reduced-fat sour cream)
1 tablespoon lemon juice (1/2 lemon)
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 garlic clove, minced or 1 teaspoon bottled minced garlic
1/4 teaspoon dried rosemary


Preheat broiler.

Coat chicken with cooking spray; sprinkle with salt, pepper, and paprika.  Place chicken on broiler pan coated with cooking spray.  Broil 5-6 minutes on each side or until done.

Combine mayonnaise and remaining 4 ingredients in a small bowl.

Serve chicken with sauce.

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 chicken breast half and 1 tablespoon sauce).

Nutrition information: 179 calories, 6.5 g fat, 26.4 g protein, 2.1 g carb, 0.2 g fiber, 71 mg chole, 1 mg iron, 357 mg sodium, 18 mg cal.

Source: Cooking Ligh Superfast Suppers, ISBN: 0-8487-2628-6.

Notes: My son is allergic to eggs, so I am currently not using mayonnaise (and keeping my fingers crossed that he grows out of his egg allergy!).  I almost decided to skip this recipe as a result...but then I thought I'd check my fridge and see if I could find a good substitute.  I had plain yogurt, but I thought it would make it too tangy.  I had buttermilk, but that would have been too runny of a sauce...and then I saw my sour cream.  Eureka!

The sauce was fantastic with the sour cream.  Probably a little more tang than the sauce that the recipe intended, but it worked wonderfully.

Also, my broiler is super slow, so it took longer for my chicken to cook than 5-6 minutes per side.  If that is the case for you too, broil until the chicken is no longer pink (check by cutting into the center with a knife) and the juices run clear.

One final change...I used a lot more paprika than 1/2 teaspoon.  I sprinkled the paprika right onto the chicken until it was to my taste.

This recipe was a great find.  Really easy, flavorful, and kid friendly too!

Rice Pilaf with Thyme


1 tablespoon butter
1 small onion, chopped
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1 1/2 cups canned reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 cup long-grain white rice
2 springs fresh thyme, or 1/2 teaspoon dried


In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium.  Add onion; season with salt and pepper.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is golden, 8-9 minutes.  Add broth, and bring to a boil.  Stir in rice and thyme.

Reduce to a simmer; cover, and cook until rice is just tender, 15-17 minutes.  Let stand 5 minutes; fluff with a fork.

Source: Everyday Food, October 2008.

Notes: Holy cow this was so easy and really flavorful.  What a great recipe to add to my repertoire of sides!

Above; I also made some super easy Irish Soda Bread (without currants and caraway seed).

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