Thursday, December 16, 2010

0 Recipe #218: Zesty Za'atar Chicken - Zippity, Zangity, Zing!

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As promised, here's the recipe for tonight's dinner. Yeah, I know. Another za'atar recipe. :) You can put this stuff on almost anything & it'll taste good, as evidenced by the number of za'atar-based recipes on this blog. :) Can you tell I absolutely adore the stuff?! ;)

Seriously, chicken and za'atar are one of the most heavenly, lip-smackingly delicious combinations ever. The za'atar gives it just the right amount of "zip & zing." Just try it & you'll see what I mean. :)

This recipe is so quick & easy to make that you can make it under 15 minutes flat. Practically effortless. Easy and delicious. Sounds like a winning combination to me!

Zesty Za'atar Chicken

1/2 lb. (8 oz.) skinless, boneless chicken breasts, rinsed, defatted, tendons removed, & patted dry
2 Tbsp. plain bread crumbs
2 Tbsp. za'atar spice mix (see recipe)
1 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp. garlic, peeled & finely minced (about 2 large cloves)
1 fresh, large bay leaf (or dried, if unavailable)
1/4 c. dry white wine
salt, to taste
ground black pepper, to taste
2 Tbsp. fresh mint leaves, roughly torn (for garnish)

Directions: Place rinsed, defatted chicken breasts onto a clean, non-porous surface. Cover with plastic wrap & tenderize, pounding with the bumpy, textured end of a meat mallet until 1/8" thick. Cut chicken into 2" wide strips & set aside. Thoroughly combine breadcrumbs & za'atar in a medium-sized bowl. Dip each piece of chicken into the bowl, thoroughly coating both sides. Shake off excess & lay onto a plate. Repeat this process until all chicken pieces have been breaded. Set aside.

Next, sauté garlic & bay leaf in olive oil in a large (12-13") sauté pan on low heat until tender, about 5 minutes. Stir occasionally. Deglaze with white wine, reducing liquid for just a few seconds before adding chicken. Transfer breaded chicken pieces from the plate into the pan, spacing pieces far enough apart so as not to crowd the pan. Season with salt & pepper, to taste. Cook chicken for a few minutes per side, until breaded exterior turns golden brown on both sides. Watch the pan carefully as tenderized chicken doesn't take very long to cook through & brown, 2-3 minutes at most. When ready, remove from heat & discard bay leaf. Divide into equal portions. Transfer to plates, & garnish with mint leaves. Serve immediately.

Yield: 2 servings.

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