Sunday, February 8, 2009

pretzel-crusted chicken with honey mustard sauce

One word: FABULOUS!

This simple little recipe only requires five ingredients, but it is honestly one of the best meals I have ever cooked! I will definitely tweak it a bit the next time around, but it will become a forerunner in our little book of family favorites!

Before we get into the recipe, let me explain what I would change:
  1. So this is more an issue with my inexperience in cooking than with the recipe itself. You need 4 cups of crushed pretzels - so I got out a zip top baggie and a bottle of salad dressing and pounded away! That first sad little baggie was pulverized into bits (sending pretzel dust all over my counters), so for the next batch I used a heavy-duty bag from our FoodSaver vacuum system. After three more batches even this tough cookie had seen its better days! I also managed to dent the bottom of a brand new bottle of salad dressing. The recipe claimed 10 minutes prep time, and this step alone took me closer to a half hour! Then as I breaded the chicken tenders, a light bulb went off in my head! "Hey sweetie! Next time I make this, I can use the food processor to crush the pretzels!" So that's what that thing is for - I just thought it was supposed to collect dust in the farthest depths of my kitchen cabinet!
  2. The recipe calls for unsalted pretzels. I like salt. I used regular salted pretzels and loved every bit of it - heck I would have even been happy with more salt! I would not recommend unsalted pretzels.
  3. The recipe also calls for chicken breasts cut into strips. I used chicken tenders. However, I did learn (the hard way) that you should cut off that little tough white thing that hangs off of one end of the tender - otherwise you'll get a bite of not-so-appetizing-plasticy-hardness at the end of each otherwise-delicious piece.
  4. I scoured the shelves for honey Dijon mustard. Lots of people make honey mustard or Dijon mustard. The only honey Dijon mustard I could find was French's (as the recipe suggests). I've used this product in the past and remember that it was way too spicy for my tastes. Nothing's changed - still much too spicy. Next time around I will just buy a store brand honey mustard. For the dipping sauce, I may even substitute Kraft's fat-free honey Dijon dressing (I LOVE to dip chicken in this stuff).
  5. The recipe says to cook for 10 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink. Even with thin chicken tenders it took 20 minutes.
  6. The recipe also says to line your baking sheet with foil. I'll stick with my Pampered Chef stoneware, no foil.
  7. Eat all of these delectable morsels the minute they come out of the oven (or at least during the same meal)! The pretzels become soggy in the fridge, so the leftovers are less-than-appetizing.

Pretzel-Crusted Chicken with Honey Mustard Sauce

4 cups unsalted tiny pretzels, crushed
4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (6 oz each), cut into 1-inch-thick strips
3/4 c honey Dijon mustard
3 tbsp chicken broth
1 1/2 tsp dried Italian seasoning
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil; set aside. Put crushed pretzels in a pie plate; set aside.
  2. Brush both sides of chicken pieces with 1/4 cup of the honey mustard. Press chicken into crushed pretzels to coat. Place on the prepared baking sheet.
  3. Bake chicken in preheated oven for 10 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink.
  4. Meanwhile, in a small microwave-safe bowl, combine the remaining 1/2 c honey mustard, chicken broth, and Italian seasoning. Microwave on high setting (100% power) for 1 minute or until heated through. Serve with chicken.

Yield: 4 servings

Source: Sandra Lee's Semi-Homemade Cooking Made Light

1 comment:

  1. I just found your blog through 5dollardinners. I'm in KC and also a complete cookbook addict! I have so many that it drives my husband nuts, but they are my main reading material and I LOVE to cook, especially from scratch! Looks like a great blog, and I can't wait to look around some more. One of these days I'm going to try and count my cookbooks - but that might be scary! :-)