I wish I could tell you that I had a great Christmas cookie recipe for you, but I have really yet to think about anything Christmas. Our tree is up, but I have a big fat zero in the gift and baking department. I guess you could say that I've been a little slow getting into the Christmas spirit this year. Hoping to get on that this weekend with a cookie exchange party on Friday and shopping days planned for this up coming weekend :)
While I may be lacking in the Christmas department, I have been trying to keep up cooking and have several recipes that are in the wings waiting to be posted. This chicken dish is a recipe that Jenna posted almost a year ago to the date on Eat, Live, Run. While the recipe title basically sums up the ingredients, the combination of the ingredients here is greater than the sum of it's parts. The caramelization of the sugar in the oven combined with the tartness from the lemon juice = yum!
Be sure not to skip the pounding step as this really helps your chicken breasts cook evenly thus helping to avoid drying them out. I don't know about you, but I feel that the chicken breasts I have been getting from the store lately are huge. Without this step, I'd probably be baking them for a hour! I continued the lemon theme here by serving these over a lemon pearl couscous. Deliciousness if I do say so myself. Enjoy!
Lemon Brown Sugar Chicken
Adapted from Eat, Live, Run
1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
juice of 2 large lemons
1 Tbsp. lemon zest
1 cup flour
2 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. salt
1-1/2 Tbsp. canola oil
2 Tbsp. brown sugar
1 cup pearl (Israeli) couscous
1/2 lemon, juiced
1-3/4 cup chicken broth
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Using a meat mallet, pound the chicken breasts until thin and even. Set aside.
Combine the flour, paprika, and salt in a shallow cake pan or container. Coat each chicken breast with the flour mixture.
Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a large skillet. Drop each chicken breast in and cook until browned on each side, about 4 minutes per side. You do not need to cook the chicken all the way through as it will finish cooking as it bakes. Remove chicken breasts and keep warm in a casserole dish.
Pour the lemon juice in the pan to deglaze. Cook until just boiling and the brown bits from the chicken are scooped up. Pour over the chicken in the casserole dish. Sprinkle with brown sugar and lemon zest. Bake for 30 minutes or until the internal temperature of the chicken breasts reach 165 degrees.
Meanwhile, for the couscous, heat a drizzle of olive oil over medium heat in a saucepan. Add couscous and stir fry until the pearls become golden brown. Add the juice of half a lemon and stir to coat the couscous. Add the chicken broth to the pan, place a lid on top and cook until all the liquid has been absorbed and the couscous is tender.