A Perfect Family Meal: Chicken with Rice and Vegetables
I took a few days off from posting because Win's sister, her husband and their 2-year old son were in town this weekend. We had a great time with them and it was so nice for their little boy and our Lima Bean to get to play together a bit. We hit the Lincoln Park Zoo and caught the last Cubs game of the season, among other things. While I did some cooking this weekend, we did eat out a lot, sharing all of our favorite neighborhood places with them.
The first night they were here I cooked a chicken, rice and vegetables dish that I want to share with you. I love this dish because it's delicious, it's simple, and everyone who's had it likes it. I whip this one out a lot when people with small children are coming over because kids usually like chicken and rice and the dish is flexible enough that the cooking can be slowed down or sped up to accomodate my guests' schedules if, let's say, their baby suddenly needs to be nursed or their toddler has to take an unexpected nap. This dish isn't so fragile that changing the timing on it ruins it.
Chicken 'N Rice
Recipe by Linda Eppedio, a family friend
4 chicken breast halves
1/2 cup bottled Italian salad dressing
2/3 cup uncooked rice
1 can (2.8 ounces) French-fried onions
1 bag (16 ounces) frozen broccoli, carrots, water chestnuts, and red pepper
1.75 cup chicken broth
1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
Place chicken in an oven-proof pan. Pour salad dressing over chicken. Bake uncovered at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. Remove from oven. Place rice, vegetables, and 1/2 can onions around and under chicken. Combine broth and seasoning. Pour over chicken. Bake uncovered 25 minutes. Top with remaining onions. Bake 2-3 minutes longer. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.
Doesn't this recipe feel so 1950s? Every time I go to the store to gather up my French-fried onions I feel very retro. I promise you that this recipe has been a hit with every group I've served it to though. This time around, I served the chicken dish accompanied by salad, peas, biscuits and extra rice just in case anyone wanted more. For dessert, I kept things simple and served tea, chocolate chip cookies and some of the white chocolate fudge I had frozen earlier in the week.
If you're looking for a dish that's delicious, easy and (hopefully) enjoyed by children too, give this one a try. Also, it makes great leftovers. I know...I ate our leftover chicken and rice for both lunch and dinner today.
On to new things tomorrow though! We have a busy month of visitors ahead. Win's mom is our next guest and she arrives in two days. I'm off to plan my menus for her visit and get my grocery list ready...