I was in San Diego this past weekend with my mother, celebrating the birthdays of her parents who turned 87 (my Mema) and 94 (my Pop pop). The best part of the visit was that my grandparents had no idea that my mother was joining me on the visit, so we gave them quite a surprise when we arrived at their home on Saturday! My mother and I cooked a meal of pork chops saltimbocca, fresh pasta with lemon and speck sauce, and swiss chard with onions. Mema also made one of her famous apple pies, which was my grandfather’s favorite part – naturally! The meal was pretty great, but it was even better to share the special occasion with my grandparents.
I haven’t had much of a chance to cook new recipes since I’ve been home, but I did manage to roast some delicious chicken last night. Simple as it may be, it was one of the best roasted chickens I have made so I thought I would share this easy recipe with you, dear readers. I served the chicken with some cauliflower, prepared in my favorite way.
Roasted Chicken Breast with Lemon and Thyme (serves 2-4)
- 2 large bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 lemon, sliced crosswise
- 2 tsp fresh thyme leaves
- salt and pepper
- 1 TB vegetable oil
Cauliflower with Tahini Sauce (serves 2)
- 1 head of cauliflower, florets removed and chopped into bite size pieces
- 1/4 cup tahini
- juice of 1/2 lemon
- 2 tsp olive oil
- cooking spray
- salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 425. Loosen skin on breasts, and spread garlic and lemon slices under the skins. Sprinkle the breasts with thyme, salt and pepper, skin side up.
While the oven is heating up, prepare the cauliflower. Combine tahini, lemon and olive oil in a small dish. Spread cauliflower evenly into a glass pyrex dish, coated with cooking spray. Toss the cauliflower with the tahini sauce, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Transfer to the oven and cook for 40 minutes, turning halfway through.
In an oven-proof skillet, heat the oil over a medium-high flame. Cook chicken breasts skin side down for 5 minutes, or until browned. Turn over breasts so the skin is facing up, then transfer to the oven.
Cooking time will vary depending on the size of the chicken breasts, but 40 minutes worked perfectly for me. Once removed from oven, separate chicken from the bone and transfer to a serving dish.
The chicken was juicy and full of delicious lemon flavor. The skins were crisp and provided a good texture to the tender meat. The roasted cauliflower came out very well, and went perfectly with the lemony chicken. I had quite a lot of leftover chicken, so I sent Annie P. home with some and plan to use the rest in my Greek salad today for lunch. Yum!