Parmesan Chicken and Rice

15 Jun

So the thing about this recipe is: you’re going to have to look past the brown.

It’s very brown, this dish. It has varying shades of brown, from tan to chocolate, but this is not a colorful entree. But if you can look past that, it is delicious and healthy, and super easy to make in the morning on these hot summer days and re-heat later in the afternoon, before chow time. It’s also light-tasting, which makes it a great seasonal dish in my book. (And it’s gluten-free, which is a nice bonus for a lot of you.)

The original recipe came from Cooking Light. They called for instant rice and different liquid values. I don’t really get instant rice, to be honest, since regular rice is so super simple to make and feels so much more substantial in the mouth, and so I adjusted out of necessity: there is no instant rice in my pantry. They also used jarred chopped garlic, which, as we’ve discussed, is bitter and nasty, and has no business in your kitchen. Frozen garlic cubes are a much better option if you don’t want to chop up the fresh stuff.

They also wanted parsley in this. Parsley is another “ick” in my house–it tastes like feet and brings nothing to food, as far as I’m concerned. I used a little fresh basil, which played off the garlic and Parmesan beautifully.

We all liked this. The kids picked out the mushrooms (more for me!), and devoured the rest, and DH and I both enjoyed it (he sprinkled a little hot sauce on his), especially the next day, when the flavors had some time to play together and develop a bit. It takes one pan, which is a plus, and was comforting and delightful.

To make it, you’ll need:

1 tbsp olive oil

1/2 cup finely diced onion (I used about 1/3 of a large Vidalia)

1 clove garlic, diced, or 1 frozen garlic cube

1/2 tsp dried thyme

8 oz button or baby bella mushrooms, sliced

About a pound of skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces (starting with tenderloins makes this step much easier–just stack them up and slice once)

3/4 cup white wine

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp pepper

1 cup uncooked rice

1 cup low-sodium chicken broth (omit the salt if you can’t find low-sodium broth)

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

A few leaves of basil, diced

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic, thyme, and mushrooms and saute about 5 minutes, until the onion softens and the mushrooms darken and release some of their juice. Add the chicken and saute a few minutes until it’s browned on the outside. Stir in the wine, salt, and pepper, and cook about 3-5 minutes, until the liquid reduces a bit.

Stir in the rice and broth. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer about 20 minutes or until rice is cooked. Remove from heat and stir in the cheese and basil. Enjoy!




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