Sunday morning Seth walked down the street to buy the Sunday paper while I made some banana chocolate chip muffins for breakfast. When he returned, the three of us sat around the table enjoying our muffins while Seth flipped through the paper, and I thumbed through Parade. Jasper was busy playing with the chocolate on his fingers.
I absolutely hate that I love Parade. It seems like a fake magazine. I mean, if you wanted real news, wouldn't you just stick to the newspaper that it comes wrapped in? And even the celebrity gossip news is second rate. But I do love it. Always have, thanks, I think, to my mom. I love to read the celebrity questions on page 2, the Amish fireplace ads and the recipes that look like they're ripped out of Woman's Day. Yes, I know it's hardly the recipe as prose of Julia Child, but it never hurts to read 'em.
I noticed a recipe for a Maple Orange Chicken. It sounded simple enough, a close cousin to that Sweet & Sticky Chicken I love.
While trying to settle on a side dish for the meal, I remembered a can of coconut milk I had in the pantry. So I made coconut rice and added steamed, cubed sweet potatoes to it. We served the chicken and its sauce right over the top. We all cleaned our plates, and Jasper wouldn't stop eating until we gave him the last little bit of rice.
At my dinner table, we decided this was a keeper: A weeknight dinner recipe that was sure to please again and again.
Coconut & Sweet Potato Rice
1 16-ounce can of coconut milk
1 cup Jasmine rice (or other fragrant white rice)
1 large sweet potato, peeled and cubed
Combine coconut milk and enough water to equal two cups of liquid. Pour liquid into medium sauce pan, season liberally with salt and bring to a low boil. Add rice, stir and cover. Simmer for approximately 15 minutes or until rice is tender and most of the liquid has been absorbed. Add a dash of coriander and season with additional salt if necessary. In a separate pan, steam sweet potato cubes. Combine rice and sweet potato. This could be done ahead and reheated before service.
Maple Orange Chicken
Adapted from Parade
4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
2 tablespoons maple syrup
2 tablespoons orange marmalade
2 tablespoons water
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Salt and pepper
Drizzle enough oil to coat the bottom of a heavy-bottomed skillet and heat over medium-high. Season both sides of chicken and place chicken in a single layer in the hot pan. Cook until golden brown and chicken releases easily and flip to cook second side. Depending on the thickness of the chicken, the meat may need additional cooking. If so, transfer browned chicken to a baking dish and place in a 350 degree oven until chicken is thoroughly cooked. Remove chicken from skillet and place heat on medium low and combine the syrup, water and marmalade. Whisk to remove the bits from the bottom of the pan. Once sauce comes to a low boil, reduce heat and cook another couple of minutes. Turn the heat off, add the lemon juice and season to taste. Toss the chicken in the sauce and serve.