Thursday, January 7, 2010

Treasure Found!

While spending time purging and cleaning my bookshelves, cupboards, and cabinets, I came across a little gem that I forgot I owned. I mean, it's been sitting on my bookshelf with all the other cookbooks I own. But somehow it's been grossly overlooked in recent years. When I found it, I felt as if I'd come across a long-lost friend. You see, it was my first real cookbook, given as a gift at a wedding shower almost 20 years ago. Gulp. Yeah. An oldie but a goodie. The cookbook, that is. (I know, I know, I see you smirking. I know.)

Tuesday afternoon I flipped through it looking for ideas. I remembered the newly-wed seriousness with which I always cooked ahead for The Boss when I wouldn't be home for dinner because of my work schedule. I remembered choosing complicated, fancy recipes for puttering in the kitchen on my days off. I smiled at my 20-something notes about converting recipes for my little 2.5 qt. slow-cooker. This year, The Boss bought me a 8.5 qt. slow-cooker! How's that for expansion?

I finally settled on one of our early favorites for this Tuesday's dinner. It's super easy and really delivers some delightful flavor. I've written it as I prepared it this week, so this is NOT exactly what is in the cookbook. And of course, I had to double it for The Gang. But it's very close to the original and just as flavorful. Give it a whirl for your family - it'll be a tropical retreat in the midst of this Arctic blast we seem to be experiencing in the northeast lately.

Caribbean Chicken Breasts with Coconut
6 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
(I pound them to 1/2" thickness or slice them lengthwise.)
Salt and pepper to taste
6 Tbsp. butter or margarine
1/2 large sweet onion, thinly sliced
1 Tbsp. brown sugar
1/4 slivered pimientos
3 Tbsp. raisins
3 Tbsp. lemon juice
3/4 c. flaked coconut
3 tsp. dried parsley
  • Preheat oven to 375. Season chicken lightly with salt and pepper. In a large fry pan, melt 4 Tbsp. of the butter over medium heat. Add chicken and cook till breast halves are lightly browned, about 3 minutes a side. Transfer chicken to a 9x9 that has been well sprayed with non-stick spray.
  • Add sliced onions to frying pan and cook till soft, being sure to deglaze the pan with the juices of the cooking onions as you cook them. Add brown sugar, pimientos, raisins, and half of the lemon juice. Stir together well. Pour over the chicken pieces. Cover with foil and bake on 375 for 10-15 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, melt remaining 2 Tbsp. of butter. In a small bowl, combine melted butter, lemon juice, coconut and parsley. After first 10-15 minutes of cooking, sprinkle coconut mixture over the chicken and onion mixture. Return to oven and bake another 10-15 minutes till chicken is cooked through.
  • Serve with noodles or brown rice. Should serve about 6.


Aus said...

We'll leave the coconut out and you may have something! This has been soup and bread week - it's bitter cold, snow in the forecast (which means extended time outdoors clearing enought to get into and out of the house - well - you can get out going down the hill but it's REALLY exciting if you do it with the snow still down!) - but maybe next week. Marie throws some kind of bread in the machine and then simmers a fresh pot of soup all day - last night a beef barley - today a chicken noodle thing - all fresh...and soooooo goood!

hugs - aus and co.

Stephanie said...

Sounds yummy - if only my gang would eat such things!