Baked Creole Chicken

Have you ever had one of those nights when you’re starving, short on time, but want something hearty and delicious for dinner? Well, this is a great recipe to take care of just that problem. Frank and I had a ton of frozen chicken in the freezer one night last week, and we just weren’t in the mood for our normal stir-fry or fajitas; we wanted some sort of baked chicken dish that we could serve alongside some warm potatoes that we really needed to eat before they went bad. I went straight to one of my favorite sites, Food Network, and just typed in “baked chicken”. Of course, a million things popped up, most of which required breadcrumbs (found a stale can in the pantry) or crushed cereal of some kind (only had cereal with chocolate or fruit in it). After some scrolling, I stumbled upon this gem, and we got to work. It was delicious! The creole sauce is very chunky, with tons of color from the diced bell peppers, and the flavor kick is just right. This is a very easy recipe, and you should be able to make it any night of the week just with what you probably already have in your pantry. Don’t be scared of the word “Creole” in the title; it’s really not that spicy!

Ingredient List
Chicken
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (~ 8 oz. each)      [800 calories]
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon onion powder
2 teaspoons dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried rosemary
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Creole Sauce
1 tablespoon olive oil     [120 calories]
2 shallot cloves, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon dried rosemary
2 teaspoons dried thyme
2 cans (32 ounces each) crushed tomatoes (with juice)     [640 calories]
Salt & freshly ground black pepper
1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced
1 green bell pepper, seeded and diced
1 small white onion, diced
1 teaspoon Cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons Creole seasoning
4 tablespoons salted butter, cubed     [400 calories]

Recipe
Serves 4
Calories per serving: 490

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Rinse chicken breasts well under cold water, then dry well with paper towels. Spray a casserole/baking dish with Pam, then arrange chicken breasts in the dish. Pour the lemon juice over the chicken breasts. In a small bowl, combine onion powder, thyme, rosemary, salt, and pepper, and mix well. Sprinkle the spice mixture over the chicken breasts evenly. Cover casserole/baking dish with aluminum foil, then bake for 30 minutes or until internal temperature of the chicken is at least 165 degrees F.
While chicken is cooking, prepare the Creole Sauce. In a saucepot, heat the olive oil over medium heat until almost smoking. Add the shallot and garlic, stirring while cooking to avoid burning the garlic, and cook until both begin to turn translucent.
Stir in the rosemary and thyme.
Add the crushed tomatoes and juice, season to taste with salt and pepper, then cover and allow to simmer over medium-low heat for 15 minutes.
Add the bell peppers, onion, Cayenne pepper, and Creole seasoning, stirring to combine well. Simmer, uncovered, for another 15 minutes over medium-low heat. Remove sauce pot from heat and whisk in the butter until fully combined with the sauce.
Serve the chicken with the Creole Sauce spooned over top.

Recipe – Baked Creole Chicken – PDF Version

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This recipe was adapted from the original created by  Robert Irvine, which was first presented on his show Dinner Impossible appearing on The Food Network. The original version can be found here
Creole Baked Chicken.

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