Friday, December 7, 2012

Healthy Go to Meals 1, Chicken Tenders & Roasted Brussel Sprouts

I love to cook. I really love to cook.  It has become a creative outlet for me.

But our life is full, and cooking with a one year old is haphazard at best. Some days she cruises happily around the kitchen as I prepare the evening's meal. On other days she hangs on me in meltdown mode, and what could be done in a short span of time can push dinner an hour or more later than desired.  Which can equal even more meltdowns, all the way around.

So I have been looking for beauty in simplicity, in the realm of cooking and menu planning. A recent success was this one:

Oven Fried Chicken Tenders & Roasted Brussel Sprouts

Both are fast and easy. I get antibiotic free Chicken Breasts at BJs. We try to be mostly local, organic meats, but chicken pieces like this are pricey, and this is a compromise I can live with.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. 

Slice chicken breasts into strips. Dip in milk, then in your favorite breading mix. I used buckwheat flour, salt, garlic powder and paprika. You can also use seasoned bread crumbs, or cracker crumbs.

Melt a couple of tablespoons of butter on a baking sheet in the warming oven. Place the breaded chicken strips onto the pan and bake for about 15 minutes on each side. I test for  temperature with a meat thermometer. Cooking time will vary depending on how thick you slice them. 
If you like them extra crispy, you can broil them for a few minutes on each side before removing from the oven.
Roasted Brussel Sprouts are hands down my favorite way to eat them. Rinse the sprouts and slice in half. Toss in olive oil and your favorite seasonings. I like minced garlic, salt and thyme. Roast for about 10 minute on each side, till they are browning and slightly crisp. Helena, my picky eater loves them this way.

I serve the chicken tenders with our favorite sauces. Barbeque, brown mustard mixed with Mayo, sometimes just ketchup.

I prepped this whole meal in about 30 minutes, including multiple interruptions from tired kids. Uninterrupted it takes about 10. 

What are some of your favorite, healthy go to meals?