Lemon Chicken Breasts Recipe
Lemon Chicken Breasts

When Ina Garten, "The Barefoot Contessa," cooks on television, she's got a vast audience.

But ask her about culinary challenges and she'll mention cooking for small households.

"It's very hard to cook for two," says Garten, author of "Barefoot Contessa How Easy Is That?: Fabulous Recipes & Easy Tips" (Clarkson Potter, 2010).

Although she's half of a twosome, Garten, the Food Network star, prefers to cook for four.

The catch is that she doesn't serve leftovers in the original state.

For example, she might serve risotto one night, followed by risotto cakes; or she could turn cooked Provencal leg of lamb into lamb sandwiches for a second meal.

Having an arsenal of flavorful seasonings and food staples on hand is key to turning last night's remains into another feast.

Garten prefers Provencal flavors such as garlic, lemons, olive oil and rosemary. Dijon mustard, capers and Parmesan cheese are also prominent in her cooking.

And because she dislikes having half-finished cans of food in the refrigerator, she either calls for fresh ingredients or canned products that are completely used up in a recipe.

The following entree adapted from Garten's new book makes four servings. She suggests serving the chicken with basmati rice or couscous to soak up the heady pan juices.

This variation uses fingerling potatoes as an accompaniment instead. Add the potatoes to the baking dish along with the chicken. Serve two breast halves and the potatoes for one meal. Use the remaining cooked chicken in either broccoli and pasta salad or Greek-style chicken and rice soup.

Lemon Chicken Breasts

Makes 4 servings.

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 40 minutes

1/4 cup good olive oil

9 cloves garlic, minced

1/3 cup dry white wine

Grated zest of 2 lemons

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 1/2 teaspoons crushed, dried oregano

1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

4 small boneless chicken breast halves, skin on (see note)

1 lemon

6 small fingerling potatoes

Heat the oil in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the garlic and cook for just 1 minute. Don't let garlic brown. Remove from heat. Add the wine, lemon zest, juice, oregano, thyme and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Pour into a 9-by-12-inch baking dish.

Pat chicken dry and place skin-side up over the wine mixture. Season liberally with salt and pepper. Cut lemon into 8 wedges and tuck among chicken pieces. Fit in potatoes.

Bake in preheated 400-degree oven for 30 to 40 minutes until chicken is completely cooked and skin is lightly browned. Cover dish with aluminum foil and set aside for 10 minutes. Serve chicken and potatoes with pan juices.

Note: If you only find bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts, ask the butcher to bone the chicken or do it yourself.

Each of 2 chicken breast halves with potatoes (without added salt) has: 350 calories; 20 grams total fat; 33 grams protein; 31.5 grams carbohydrates; 82 milligrams cholesterol; 380 milligrams sodium and 3 grams dietary fiber.

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