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I realize this does not look like a breezy, summer meal idea. But folks, as I write this post it’s the Monday after the 4th of July weekend and I’m tired. Really, really, tired. A little too much celebration, not enough sleep, and I was forced, against my will, up and out of my deliciously comfortable bed and back to work a little too early this morning. All of this caused an intense craving for a savory, comforting dish that has nothing at all to do with the summery BBQ fare we’ve been consuming for the past couple of months.
This meal definitely hit the spot. The chicken is a little sweet, a lot savory, and wonderfully satisfying.
Since the big flavor in this dish comes from just a few ingredients, you want to be sure to use good stuff. Pure maple syrup – not pancake syrup. There’s a big difference so be sure you’ve got the real thing. Trader Joe’s has an excellent price so check there if you’ve got one nearby.
A high quality stone ground mustard.
Fresh thyme. In this dish, fresh is best.
Grab a big, oven-proof skillet and brown some boneless, skinless chicken breasts in a little olive oil. We aren’t concerned with cooking them through at this point, just get a good golden brown sear on them. Season them with a little salt and pepper while they cook. If your chicken breasts are very large, feel free to cut them down to smaller serving sized pieces. I usually slice them through the middle to create two thinner pieces so that they’ll cook faster but it’s not necessary if you want to serve larger pieces.
Remove the chicken to a dish and add the chicken broth, pure maple syrup, thinly sliced garlic, and fresh thyme to the pan. Scrape up the browned bits from the bottom of a pan while it comes to a boil.
Add 1 tablespoon of that good quality stone-ground mustard and 1 tablespoon of cider vinegar.
Add the browned chicken back to the pan and pop it in a preheated 400 degree oven for about 10 minutes, or until the chicken is no longer pink in the center. It might take longer depending on the thickness of your chicken.
Spoon the sauce and sliced garlic over the chicken and you’re ready to serve. It was delicious with my Creamy Orzo with Mushrooms and Parmesan. A super fast and easy dinner idea for any time of year.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 4 boneless skinless chicken breast halves, sliced thinner or cut down into smaller portions, if desired
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup low sodium chicken broth
- 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
- 2 medium garlic cloves thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon stone-ground mustard
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Coat a large oven-proof skillet with olive oil and place over medium-high heat. Add chicken to pan and saute for about 2 minutes per side, seasoning with salt and pepper as it cooks. Remove chicken from pan. Add broth, syrup, thyme, and garlic to pan; bring to a boil, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Cook 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add vinegar and mustard; cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Return chicken to pan, and spoon mustard mixture over chicken.
- Transfer skillet to preheated oven and bake for 10 minutes or until the chicken is no longer pink in the center. Remove pan from the oven and spoon the sauce and garlic over the chicken. Serve.
- Adapted from Cooking Light
More great dinner ideas that are on the table in 30 minutes or less.