Baked chicken with a light lemon marinade brings a welcome relief from the indulgence of holiday treats and dishes.
The Pastry Chef's Baking
It's that time of year when I temporarily switch over from dessert recipes to "real food" recipes. It's partly because I've been baking so much over the holidays that yes, even I burn out on baking and sugar. Don't worry, that particular insanity really does pass (give me another week or so). In the meantime, I still have to eat and as part of every new year, I make a concerted effort to cook for myself and stop eating out or getting takeout for my sustenance. Actually, I've been getting better at cooking for myself (not necessarily the results, just the act of cooking) and as has been the theme with real food recipes this year, Pinterest provides a lot of possibilities.
Case in point is this recipe for lemon chicken I found on Pinterest from Juju Good News. This is a healthy rendition of lemon chicken where the main ingredient really is lemon. I still have a bunch of lemons from my mom's lemon tree and she keeps asking if I need more. Since I'm not baking, I decided to repurpose the lemons into a savory dish in an attempt to use up the bounty. Plus, my friend Hongpei gave me a rosemary plant for Christmas so this had the added bonus of using a fresh herb I already had.
If you make the recipe as is, this is a pretty healthy choice, even healthier if you leave off the butter. I used boneless, skinless chicken breasts and had half a piece over a bed of salad greens (squirt of lemon as the dressing) for my dinner. I know, I know, you think someone's hacked my blog and this couldn't possibly be me. Would it help if I said I followed up that singularly healthy dinner with a chocolate chip cookie baked in a ramekin and topped with vanilla ice cream? See, it really is me.
In any case, if you make this recipe, I don't advise using chicken breasts. As I've discovered (more than once but I keep forgetting), they dry out too easily. I baked mine a trifle too long so yup, they were a bit dry. There isn't much "sauce" although the lemon does permeate the chicken nicely, especially considering I marinated it overnight. So stick with the thighs or drumsticks per the original recipe.