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Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Balsamic Rosemary Chicken

I have a confession to make: I own two or three Rachel Ray cookbooks. I don't use them much any more, but back when I was newly married, working full time, and in charge of almost everything in our household because my husband was working on his dissertation and toward a tenure-track job, I just didn't have the time or energy to cook. I also didn't cook that well at that point. I liked to cook, and many of my college friends thought that I was a good cook, but we all know how high college-aged food standards are!

I started my self-taught cooking classes with Rachel Ray. Whatever your opinion of her, her recipes are easy to make and quick, and the ingredients are usually what you already have on hand. (I did find even back then, though, that her recipes tend to be a little bland...) Like I said, I don't use her cookbooks much any more, but I do owe a debt of gratitude for teaching me some kitchen basics.

One of her recipes that have remained a staple in our household, though, is her Balsamic Rosemary Chicken. The marinade helps keep the chicken moist, while also creating a nice caramelized crust once cooked. This is not a dish to serve when having a fancy dinner party, but makes an easy, tasty, and cheap (!) weeknight dinner with or without guests. Leftovers are great in salads or pasta...

Balsamic Rosemary Chicken
from Rachel Ray

4 pieces boneless, skinless chicken breast
2 Tbl balsamic vinegar, just enough to coat chicken lightly
2 Tbl extra-virgin olive oil
3 stems rosemary, leaves stripped and chopped, about 2 Tbl, or about 1 Tbl dried rosemary
Salt and coarse black pepper
4 cloves garlic, cracked away from skin with a whack against the flat of your knife (at least...I usually add more.)

Coat chicken in balsamic vinegar, then olive oil. Season chicken with rosemary, salt and pepper and let stand at least 10 minutes along with the garlic.

Heat a medium nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Add chicken breasts and cracked garlic to the pan. Cook chicken 12 minutes, or until juices run clear, turning occasionally. The balsamic vinegar will produce a deep brown, sweet finish on the chicken as it cooks.


Chef E April 7, 2009 at 11:40 AM  

I smile every time I see someone making a confession, and it turns out we all did the same thing. Tators must be a theme today...so I am making them ASAP! Gave them up to loose weight, but mashers are calling out to me!

Joie de vivre April 7, 2009 at 5:06 PM  

There's nothing wrong with Rachel Ray girl (except an annoying voice), but her food always looks fantastic.

Shannon April 7, 2009 at 5:59 PM  

Jujj the chicken around a little in the pan with some EVOO and it will be yum-o!

Rachel Ray, you drive me nuts!

The recipes are never that bad though =)

Lori April 7, 2009 at 7:24 PM  

My confession - I subscribe to her magazine. Aside from good food they always have the cutest gifts featured in it.

I used to be a big fan actually and still have her show on TiVo for when I'm bored, but haven't watched in a while. My fan status has dwindled as she started showing up everywhere all the time. However, I will say I find her success story inspiring.

The recipe looks great! I have some standard favorites from her as well. :)

Dragon April 7, 2009 at 11:04 PM  

I agree with Joie de Vivre, Rachel is great except for the voice. I really have a hard time listening to her. :) Your chicken looks wonderful.

Sarah Herman April 8, 2009 at 10:07 PM  

I have a secret also, even chefs use rachel's recipes from time to time! But they never would admit it!!! :)

Chef E April 9, 2009 at 11:54 AM  

I had to come back for another look at this...I am making tators for our Friday night cuddle time dinner! YUM...I almost cannot wait thinking about this dish...

Mindy April 9, 2009 at 3:09 PM  

Thanks, everyone, for making me feel better about using Rachel recipes! ;-)

And ChefE, let me know how you like it!

Jamie April 11, 2009 at 1:29 AM  

Yum! There is a similar recipe in my Mario Batali cookbook with the most delectable photo! I have been wanting to make this but never have. You are going to push me to finally do it!

And I like Rachel Ray's recipes!

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