Simple Recipes: Roasted Chicken Breast
I’m sure that a concept of a “simple” recipe is largely individual. For me, it means that you have a few ingredients, and the actual prep time is rather short. Actual cooking can be short, long or very long, like the beef brisket I shared with you a while ago – but the actual cooking time doesn’t affect the difficulty level of making the dish.
The dish I’m talking about today perfectly fits the bill – very few ingredients, very simple to make. Why am I talking here about something as banal as roasted chicken breast? I love the ultimate flexibility of this dish. Without changing the complexity for a bit, you are limited only by your imagination in the way the dish will taste, and also in the ways you can use it.
It just happened to be that I’m mostly responsible for making the school lunch for my daughter (sometimes she would make it herself, but I was unable to solidify that tendency). One of the easiest and most convenient items to make is a wrap. And we were making the wraps for the long time with Costco’s pre-sliced roasted turkey breast. The Costco product tastes fine, but I always wondered, how much preservatives do you need to make something like pre-sliced turkey breast to last for at least two weeks after it is opened (try that with regular deli meat – but please don’t share the experience). At some point, we decided that we have to try something different. Almost a revelation, but we recalled that a few times we roasted chicken breast, and it would perfectly fit the purpose of the “sandwich meat”. From that moment on, this simple roasted chicken breast proven its versatility many times. Now, let me give you recipe first and then we can talk about a few possible uses.
Roasted Chicken Breast:
- Prep time – 5 minutes, cooking time – about 50 minutes
- 3 lb chicken breast (about 3 large pieces)
- Dry herbs or any rub spices
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- salt, pepper – according to the individual taste
- cooking time – about 50 minutes ( assume 15 minutes per pound) at 375F
Cooking instructions: Take chicken breast, put it the bowl, add herbs, spices, salt, pepper and olive oil. Mix together, cover with plastic, refrigerate for few hours if desired. Pre-heat oven at 375F. Arrange chicken breast on the roasting pan, put in the oven and cook uncovered for about 15 minutes per pound. When done – take out, let it cool down. Voila – your roasted chicken breast is ready to be used for many possible applications. Here is the same recipe in the form of pictures:
Again, my real point here is to give you an idea of the dish, which can be taken in many possible directions:
- you can substitute the spices with anything your heart desires – BBQ rub, chipotle, spicy paprika, cajun – anything you can think of
- instead of using dry spices and oil, you can use marinades – mayo with mustard, wine, yogurt and garlic, anything you like.
Once the chicken breast is cooked, you are looking at multiple uses as well:
- as cold cuts – we usually make a few flavors for the parties
- in sandwiches and wraps
- top the salad
- chop it into the tiny pieces and make filling/topping for tartlets, pies, etc.
The last (and almost unbeatable) important factor for me – where I live, it is still possible to buy boneless chicken breast for $1.99/lb – compare that with the price of deli meats…
Anyway, I’m done here. I wonder what you think about this simple dish, and if you have your “staple of simplicity” in your home cooking – comment away. And be assured (or scared) – I have more simple recipes to share with you. Until that time – cheers!