lemon chicken (a recipe)

I’ve been making this lemon chicken dish for years now, after I found a recipe online by Rachael Ray.  I changed it up a little bit (to make it a little simpler to make), and there was a time when I made it at least once a month (dare I say once a week at some point?!) because it’s one of my husband’s all-time favorite dishes.  It’s so simple to make, and I think it takes longer to cook the rice that goes with it!  My stepdad has taken a liking to it too, so I usually make a huge batch of it whenever I visit them in California so that he has some for dinner and a couple of lunches during the rest of the week.

The recipe below is what I use to make enough for dinner for my husband and I on one night, and it is enough for someone to have leftover for lunch the next day (or you could just say, 3 generous portions).  The original recipe calls for chicken broth, but I can’t use the canned kind from the store so I use water or homemade chicken stock.  (That’s because of my carrot and celery allergies).

Ingredients:

–  3 boneless chicken breasts, cut into 1″ chunks
– 1 jar of Dickinson’s lemon curd
– 1 lemon, zested and squeezed
- about a 1/2 cup of flour
– a bunch of scallions, sliced really thin
– salt and pepper
– a clove of garlic (optional)
– oil (I prefer to use olive oil)
– 1/2 to 1 cup of water (or chicken broth)

Directions:

1. If you plan to eat this with rice, get that going now so that it cooks while the chicken cooks.

2. If you haven’t done so already, cut up the chicken and put them in a bowl with the flour and some salt and pepper.  Be generous with the seasonings because not all of it will stick to the chicken.  You can also use things like garlic salt, or other herbs like basil, oregano, etc.  Mix them up so that the chicken pieces are well coated.

3.  Heat enough oil over medium-high heat to cover the bottom of your pan and then place the chicken in as one layer.  It may not all fit so you might have to do this in batches (depending on how much chicken you want to make).  This is a good time to add the clove of garlic, too, if you decide to use one (I put it in whole so that it doesn’t get too garlicky, but you can also chop it up, etc.)  Cook for about 3 to 5 minutes or until you notice it getting cripy and browned on the bottom.

4.  Flip the chicken over so that you can brown the other side.  I know this is going to sound insane but I actually enjoy using tongs to turn each one over.  I like to make sure the chicken gets cooked evenly on all sides.  Let this cook for another 3 minutes or until starts to crisp up and brown.  Turn the heat down to low and then remove the chicken into a bowl or onto plate.  It’s okay if they’re not fully cooked through because you’re going to put them back into the pan to cook a few more minutes later.

5.  With the heat still on low, add the lemon curd and water (or broth if you’re using that).  I only add about half the jar of lemon curd but you can add more if you like it sweeter.  Use the back of a spoon or your spatula to smash down the lemon curd and it will dissolve in the liquid.  Let the heat come back up to a simmer and then add the squeezed lemon juice, the lemon zest, and green onions.

A note about the green onions: I actually like to start slicing them from the bottom up, and using the white parts because it’s going to cook down a lot and I like an oniony flavor.  You can use less or more onions based on your tastes, and sometimes I’ll save the green part to throw in at the last minute.

6.  Once the sauce has come back to a simmer, add the chicken back into the pan and let it cook another 5-7 minutes.  The flour that was left in the pan after you took the chicken out will help thicken the sauce.  Serve over rice and enjoy!

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