This dish is one of both of our favorite's. Not only is it packed with flavor, it's so quick and easy. We usually have most of the ingredients on hand already, too, which puts that sweet maraschino cherry right on top!
(From Rachael Ray's Classic 30-Minute Meals cookbook.)
- 1 pkg (5-7 oz.) white and wild rice, chicken or herb flavor
- 2 tbsp EVOO (twice around the pan)
- 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 1/4 C balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 C water
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 1/3 C heavy cream, half-and-half, or sour cream (I prefer the first or second)
- 4 or 5 sprigs fresh tarragon, leaves stripped and chopped
- 1 pkg (2 oz. or 1/4 C) chopped walnuts, toasted
- 2 tbsp chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley (optional)
- Toast walnuts. (Make sure to remove from pan when done as leaving them in will keep them cooking.)
- Start cooking rice according to package directions.
- Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add EVOO, then chicken, and season with salt and pepper. Brown and cook chicken 5 minutes on each side.
- Transfer chicken to a plate and cover. Reduce heat under skillet a bit.
- Add vinegar and water; scrape up pan drippings.
- Stir in tomato paste, cream and tarragon. Remove skillet from heat.
- Toss cooked rice with nuts and parsley. Slice chicken on an angle and arrange on a bed of rice. Top with sauce and serve.
P.S. It wouldn't be kind of me to just tell you how I got to leave city life behind for five days of shrieking seagulls, salty air and sandy toes without sharing just a little bit with you, so I leave you this evening with