Glazed Balsamic Chicken and Sautéed Butternut Squash
Do you ever have those days where no matter how hard you try, the timing of a meal never quite seems to work? I had one of those last night. I was running around like a chicken with my head cut off, and I think my husband felt sorry for me because I looked so frazzled. I tried to time each dish so that they would all be ready at the same time, and undoubtedly failed.
The recipe for chicken was supposed to be very quick, so I started my butternut squash at the same time as I was starting to sear the chicken. Bad idea. The chicken breasts were taking forever to cook, so I kept having to adjust the heat for the squash.
Then there was the matter of the couscous. Believe me, this couscous is the easiest thing in the world to make. Even easier than KD. You boil water, add the couscous, stir it, remove from heat and let it sit for 5 mins. That’s it. I mean really, who could screw that up?
I was so frazzled with trying to get everything ready and timed properly that instead of measuring out the 2 cups of water needed for the couscous, I just filled my pot with water and brought it to a boil. Maybe I subconsciously thought I was boiling potatoes? In any case, I didn’t realize what I had done until the moment I dumped the couscous in. It’s the same feeling as when you realize at the same moment as you’re shutting your car door that the keys are locked inside.
Despite all the chaos, and after a new batch of couscous, I did manage to pull everything together. Amazingly.
Glazed Balsamic Chicken:
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/4 tsp each salt and pepper
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp crumbled dried sage or rosemary
1 cup chicken stock
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 tsp liquid honey
1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
1. In shallow dish or sturdy bag, combine flour, salt and pepper. Add chicken and turn or shake to coat. Reserve leftover flour mixture.
2. In large skillet, heat half of the oil over medium heat; fry chicken, turning once, until no longer pink inside, about 12 minutes.
3. Add remaining oil to pan; fry garlic and sage just until golden, about 1 minute. Sprinkle with reserved flour; cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Stir in stock, vinegar and honey; simmer until thickened enough to coat back of spoon.
4. Return chicken and any juices to pan, turning to coat; simmer until glazed, about 1 minute. Sprinkle with parsley.
[Recipe from Canadian Living "Best Chicken" magazine]
Sautéed Butternut Squash with Lemon, Pecans & Parsley:
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp butter
1 butternut squash, peeled, and cut into 1/2-in-chubes
salt & freshly ground pepper to taste
1/3 cup chopped pecans, toasted (the original recipe called for walnuts, but I prefer pecans)
1 1/2 tsp freshly grated lemon zest
Heat the oil and butter in a skillet over med-high heat. Add the squash, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the squash is lightly browned and tender, 8 to 10 mins. Add parsley, pecans, and lemon zest, stir to combine.