Friday, January 15, 2016

Pecan-Crusted Chicken Breasts

Fried chicken is all the rage. But the New Year is still fresh. My resolve should last at least a few weeks before I need to start frying things.

So today, we're baking our chicken. Low-fat boneless, skinless chicken breasts are healthy, but—let's be honest—they can be a little boring. Not so when you bake them with a crisp crust of pecans and drizzle them with a flavorful honey mustard sauce.

Let's get cooking!

Pecan-Crusted Chicken Breasts with Curried Honey Mustard Sauce
Adapted from Everyday Food Fresh Flavor Fast
Serves: 4

Pecan-Crusted Chicken:
3/4 cup pecans
1/2 cup breadcrumbs
2 eggs
Salt and pepper
Olive oil
4 small boneless skinless chicken breasts

Curried Honey Mustard Sauce:
3 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons honey
2 teaspoons apricot preserves
1/8 teaspoon curry powder

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place pecans on a baking sheet and toast for 5 minutes, just until they are very lightly toasted. Remove pecans from the oven and increase the temperature to 475 degrees. Finely chop pecans.

In a wide, shallow bowl combine chopped pecans and breadcrumbs. Beat eggs in a second shallow bowl. Season pecans and eggs generously with salt and pepper.

Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil for easy clean up. Grease foil with a light drizzle of olive oil or a mist of cooking spray.

Dip chicken breast in eggs and allow excess to drip off. Dredge in pecan mixture, pressing to help the pecans adhere. Place on prepared baking sheet and repeat with remaining chicken. Drizzle chicken with olive oil. (Or if you have one of those handy olive oil misters, you could mist the chicken with oil.) Bake for 10-15 minutes, until chicken is cooked through and reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees. Allow chicken to rest for 5 minutes.

While the chicken rests, stir together ingredients for Curried Honey Mustard Sauce. Serve chicken with sauce.