I started this blog a little over a year ago with this recipe for Simple Roasted Chicken. Both my website and my cooking experience have come a long way since then. The recent lockdown – which is not entirely over yet! – created a global opportunity to cook more often. For everyone! I, personally, enjoyed every moment of it. To be honest, I did expect to eventually get tired of it. But that day has yet to come!
To go straight to the recipe for Simple Roasted Chicken with Salad, click here.
Overall, it was like going to a two month long cooking camp! I may be overly optimistic, but focusing on what made me happy helped me stay positive. A side effect of this was that I became a better cook. Which reaffirms what you already know – you can be good at anything, if you practice enough.
However, certain things remained the same – because they work. Such as this roasted chicken recipe.
It is as good as it was a year ago, and I rely on it just as much.
In this dish, a simple, fresh salad compliments the chicken in a delightful way. Arugula is my go-to salad base, unless I am making Caesar Salad, for which I use traditional Romaine lettuce. Freshly squeezed lemon juice with olive oil, salt, and freshly ground black pepper make a wonderful, fresh dressing. Avocado and Parmigiano Reggiano add healthy and delicious fats to this otherwise low carb meal. Whatever your health and diet goals may be, this salad is easily customizable to fit it.
An optional way to serve it:
If you are hungry, and salad just won’t cut it, consider adding potatoes and carrots to the pan with the chicken.
Right before you put the chicken in the oven, transfer the chicken to a plate, and add the vegetables to the pan.
Toss them well and sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper.
Push it to the sides (but don’t crowd it – use a separate dish if you must), and place the chicken in the middle. Proceed with the recipe.
Since the beginning of the quarantine, what have you enjoyed making? Let me know in comments section your observations, stories, and experiences.
I truly believe everyone can cook, and I hope, if nothing else, you were able to benefit physically (and financially!) from cooking most of your meals at home. If you have any questions or feedback on this or any other of my recipes, you can always find me on Instagram (@babushkacooking), FaceBook (Babushka Cooking), or e-mail me at email@example.com
From Kitchen, With Love –
Simple Roasted Chicken with Salad
- 2 chicken breasts, boneless and skinless
- 1 Tb olive oil
- 1 Tb butter
- salt, freshly ground black pepper
- 2 handfuls arugula, or other greens of your choice
- 1 avocado, peeled and sliced
- Parmigiano Reggiano, shavings or very thin slices
- drizzle of olive oil
- juice from 1/4 lemon
- salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Preheat the oven to 425 F.
- While the oven is preheating, place the chicken on a paper towel lined plate or a cutting board.
- Dry the chicken with paper towels. This step is very important – if the chicken is not dry, it won’t brown. Season generously with salt and freshly ground black pepper on both sides.
- Melt the butter and olive oil in an ovenproof pan over medium heat for a few minutes.
- Once the butter and oil are hot (it should take about 5 minutes, depending on your stove), carefully add the chicken breasts. Do not crowd the pan!
- Sear for 4 minutes and flip over. It may feel stuck, but you can “wiggle” it gently using tongues or two spatulas, but don’t move it from side to side while it cooks. Sear the other 4 minutes as well.
- Put the pan in the oven and bake for 20 minutes. Internal temperature should be 165 F minimum.
- While chicken is in the oven, you have time to make the salad.
- In a medium bowl, toss arugula with olive oil, freshly squeezed lemon juice, salt, and freshly ground black pepper.
- Divide greens between two plates. Top with shavings of Parmigiano Reggiano, and half of an avocado per plate. *If you are not serving the salad immideately, squeeze additional lemon juice over avocado to prevent darkening.
- Once the chicken is cooked, let sit for at least 5 minutes. It’s a good rule for any meat – juices “run wild” in meats while it’s cooked, so letting it sit for a few minutes allows the juices to soak back in which is responsible for most of the flavor.
- Add the chicken to prepared salad plates and serve immideately. Enjoy!