Cooking Chicken For The First Time In 4 Years – Recipe Included

It is only fitting after yesterday’s post on animal protein that I write about my experience with chicken this week.  Here’s a little back history….  I stopped eating meat exactly four years ago this month.  I had just returned from two weeks in France where much of my time was spent eating steak, cheese, bread, nutella crepes and red wine.  I came home to NY and put myself on a one week cleanse of raw fruits and vegetables to flush my body of the chaos.  I don’t know what happened in that week, but when I went to eat meat again it made me nauseous and sick.  I had thoroughly lost my taste for it.  As each week went by, meat free, I began to feel lighter, more energized, my digestion was better and I felt significantly healthier.  Four years later and I do not regret the dietary decisions I’ve made.  If I really wanted it, I would have it.  Which leads me to this week.  Not once in four years have I craved red meat or pork, but for some reason in the past two months I haven’t stopped craving chicken.  No, I’m not pregnant, and my protein intake isn’t lacking as I eat sufficient amounts of fish, beans, nuts, eggs etc…  My body was apparently telling me something.  I don’t know what it was, but I decided to give in and listen to it.

The thought of cooking chicken was daunting.  A million things ran through my mind.  Do I really want to do this?  Is it going to make me sick?  Is this a slippery slope towards other meats?  I quieted my mind, trusted my body, and bought the two best boneless, skinless breasts I could find (organic, free-range, antibiotic-free, certified humane, you name it).  Having not cooked meat in years, I busted out my favorite cookbooks for inspiration.  I decided on a pretty innocuous recipe; a lightly breaded pan-cooked breast in a mustard sauce.  My husband never thought I’d eat it all, but I cleaned my plate as if it were chocolate cake.  Moral of the story: it was delicious, I didn’t die or get sick, and the craving is now gone.  I’m not sure if chicken is going to become a regular part of my diet again.  You definitely won’t find me devouring a plate of chicken wings at a seedy sports bar, but I do know this, if I really want it and it’s high quality, then I will have it…and apparently enjoy it.

Chicken Breasts with Mustard Sauce

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Cookbook: Eat Well

Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 ½ cups whole-wheat bread crumbs (or panko)
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup dry white wine
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • ½ chicken or vegetable broth
  • 2 tablespoons whole-grain mustard
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Method:

Pound chicken to an even thickness (about ¾ inch), sprinkle with salt and pepper, and dredge into bread crumbs to coat well.  Heat oil in a large nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat, add chicken, and reduce heat to medium.  Cook, turning once, until browned and cooked through, 4-5 minutes per side.  Transfer to a plate and cover with foil.  Add wine, broth, and honey to the pan.  Bring to a boil, scraping up any browned bits from pan bottom.  Boil to reduce sauce to about ½ cup, about 3-4 minutes.  Stir in mustard and season to taste with salt and pepper.  Spoon sauce over chicken and serve immediately.  (I served it with wild brown rice and roasted asparagus.)

Enjoy!

DK

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s