Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Election Night - and a Good Chicken Breast Recipe

Hola darlings! Since I do not have cable or satellite television, I am rather limited to my choice of prime time television viewing tonight. All of the major networks and one of our PBS channels are featuring election coverage :) As I was taking the bus to the office this morning, I had a passing thought - more a daydream than anything rooted in reality - that John McCain would give a concession speech by 10:00 p.m. Milwaukee time tonight. We'll see. In the meantime, I'll be interested to learn - probably not until much later because the polls don't close for at least another hour in California - what the estimated percentage turn-out was for eligible voters across the country. I tried a chicken breast recipe tonight that turned out great - absolutely delicious! I've had grilled chicken breast that's been dry and tasteless, and fried chicken breast that is greasy and soggy. This one came out crisp on the outside (before I melted a slice of swiss cheese over the top, yum!) and moist but cooked through inside. Here's the recipe - since I was only cooking one chicken breast for myself, I disregarded the amounts given in the recipe I found online. This is my wing-it (har!) version: Called for flour - I didn't have any - I forgot, I tossed it out a few months ago because it was so old it couldn't possible have been good anymore. But I did have some not quite so old generic baking mix in the cabinet (think Bisquick), so I tossed some of that in a shallow bowl, added lots of salt, pepper and non-salt Mrs. Dash spice mix. Stirred around. In a separate bowl mixed up one egg (no seasonings added). Washed and dried the chicken breast (skinless), then plopped it into the egg bowl, both sides, then tossed it into the dry mix bowl, first one side and then the other. Shake shake shake, then back in the egg mix on both sides once again. Then into the dry mix on both sides a final time. Plopped it into a hot frying pan to brown both sides. I used Pam vegetable oil spray because I'm counting calories, although the recipe called for frying in vegetable oil. The Pam did smoke up the pan a lot, but it also browned the "crust" on the chicken just fine. My total cooking time was perhaps five minutes. Put the browned chicken breast into a glass baking dish and tossed into a preheated 350 degree oven for 25 minutes. I pulled it out of the oven, tented it for about 5 minutes with aluminum foil to let it cool but keep it moist, then put it on a plate, added one slice of swiss cheese over the top, and microwaved it on high for 60 seconds. Now that I think about it, I probably could have just put the swiss cheese on top of the just out of the oven chicken before I tented it to let it rest, and it would have melted without nuking. It passed the taste test, but perhaps could have used a bit more seasonings in the dry mix. It was cooked through, but very moist and tender. The swiss cheese added an additional layer of flavor. The coating was just a bit crispy, not dry and not soggy. One rather smallish chicken breast and a cup of green peas filled me up for supper!

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