Taking Liberties

It's recipe time! For some strange reason I've never shared a recipe on here, so now's the time!

I'm kind of a strange cook in that I follow a recipe, but I tend to guess-timate amounts alot, and if I don't have something the recipe calls for I add something else that I do have. So even though I'm following a recipe, alot of times it turns out to be my own creation inadvertantly. Hence the name of the post, because I have no problem taking liberties with a recipe. Feel free to take liberties with mine!

If any of you have watched this season of Biggest loser (I think it was this season: I'm pretty sure), during one of those challenges that they do they brought that cook guy on the show (the one that does the show "Take Home Chef") and he showed them how to make healthy shishcabobs. One of the steps was to use chicken breasts and to pound them thin before you cook them, because then you don't have to cook them as long and it's healthier that way.

Derek and I love chicken, and up until then I cooked chicken breasts alot! So I decided the next time I made chicken I would pound them out like that.
If you also recall, the cabobs were a sort of honey-mustard cabob. I didn't have cabob skewers or vegetables or those rosemary sticks that he used, but I wanted to make something similar to what was on the show, because Derek thought it looked really good, and it was supposed to be healthy. And I'm all about those low-calorie dinners; I have to watch my figure, you know. The first year of marriage is supposed to be the worst weight-gain year.

So one day when I didn't have to work I decided I'd try it. I thawed out our frozen chicken breasts using my trusty microwave. Next I took one chicken breast and put it between two pieces of saran wrap. I didn't have a meat hammer, so I just pounded it out with my fist (that sentence makes me sound all tough!). Then I cooked them on the stove. Just like normal cooking, except for the pounding thing first.
They turned out rather well. I like having them thinner like that, because they do seem to cook better, and they're easier to cut afterwards.

I wanted to do a honey-mustard glaze, since that's what they used on the Biggest Loser. So I looked it up in my wonderful Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook (thanks, Mom!). I didn't have some of the spices in the recipe, so I modified. The recipe also called for brown sugar, which I thought was silly, because the honey makes it sweet - so I left that out. Here's my version of Honey Mustard Chicken breasts. Derek and I just ate the chicken for dinner, but I thought it would also be great on rice. Or you could just add potatoes or vegetables for a side, and you have yourself a meal!

Honey Mustard Chicken

3-5 chicken breasts

1/3 cup honey
2 tablespoons Dijon style mustard
2 tablespoons apple juice (I also used lime juice, and it's fine if you just leave this out too)
1 tablespoon finely chopped onion or 1 teaspoon dried minced onion
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (I just used chile pequin, the kind of pepper you put on pizza - it's what I had, and I thought it tasted good)

1. Place individual chicken breasts between two layers of saran wrap. Pound chicken with a meat tenderizer (this is where I just used my fist) until desired thickness is reached. The thinner the meat is, the easier to cook.

2. Cook chicken well in greases frying pan over medium to mdium high heat. Cook until chicken is no longer pink. Set aside.

For sauce:

3. Stir together honey, mustard, juice, onion and pepper. Bring to just boiling, then simmer for 5-7 minutes, until desired thickness is reached.

4. Spread honey mustard sauce over chicken breasts and serve warm (I usually put the chicken and suace in a pan and put it in the oven for a few minutes to heat it through and make sure the chicken is warm).

5. Serve with vegetables or rice for a more complete meal!

There it is! This recipe is also really good if you just do honey barbecue sauce - just mix together barbecue sauce and honey and used that for the glaze instead. The barbecue version would probably be really good as a sandwich too! Here's a picture of the barbecue version as well. Enjoy!

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AmyK said...

Oh my goodness, yum. That looks and sounds so good! I don't ever follow recipes exactly either. I usually pull up a recipe and follow the ingredient list (sorta) but guess on amounts and change it up according to what I have on hand and what sounds good at the time--or if there's something I think would work better than an ingredient listed, then I swap it out. ;)

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