Low-Carb Lesson #55: Mustard Herbed Chicken Breasts

Low Carb Cooking 101: Low-Carb Lesson #55: Mustard Herbed Chicken Breasts

This is a quick meal to put together – assuming that you remember to thaw the chicken breasts. If you forget, go to Plan B and prepare something else. I’ve found that chicken breasts thawed in the microwave tend to come out tough and dry. Chicken breasts are expensive; it’s not worth ruining them to stick to your original pan. Put them in the refrigerator to thaw and fix something else.

Better yet, go out to eat, which is a lot easier to do these days and stay on your low carb track. It seems like a multitude of restaurants are jumping on the low carb bandwagon – and none too soon as far as I’m concerned! I’m particularly impressed with Ruby Tuesdays’ new low carb menu items. I haven’t had a chance to sample them all, but their creamed spinach is wonderful. I’d order it even if I weren’t low carbing. They even have a low carb dessert choice, a sugar free cheesecake!

But back to actually cooking … sigh. (It does get old, doesn’t it?) I often double or even triple the Mustard Herbed Chicken recipe, cool down the breasts, then cut them into bite-sized pieces. The little jumble of pieces from each breast gets popped in a Zip Lock freezer bag and put in the freezer to be used later for main dish salads (or sometimes just for a snack). Pop the still-frozen bag of chicken breast pieces in your lunch along with you salad fixings, and by lunchtime the chicken will be thawed and ready to eat.

Here’s this evening’s menu:

  • Mustard Herbed Chicken Breasts
  • Anytime Bean Medley
  • Spinach And Strawberry Salad

Here’s the shopping list for the meal. You may very well already have some of these things on hand:

  • 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • butter
  • 1 package prewashed spinach
  • 12 strawberries
  • 12 mushrooms
  • 1 small bag frozen cut green beans
  • 1 can wax beans
  • olive oil
  • red wine vinegar
  • 1 small jar grainy mustard
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • Ken’s Steakhouse Raspberry Vinaigrette salad dressing (or salad dressing of your choice)
  • dried tarragon
  • dried thyme
  • salt
  • black pepper
  • not/Starch

Here’s the game plan:

If they are frozen, thaw the chicken breasts the night before by removing them from the freezer and putting them in the refrigerator. If they are still slightly frozen when you get home from work or an hour or so before you plan to serve the meal, take them out of the refrigerator and put them on the counter to completely thaw.

This meal goes together very quickly, so set the table before you begin to prepare it.

Prepare the Spinach and Strawberry Salad according to the recipe directions, but do not put the dressing on it. Put the salad in the refrigerator to keep it chilled until cooking the meal is completed.

Prepare the Anytime Bean Medley according to the package directions up to the point where the beans are in the saucepan ready to cook. Turn the burner on the stove to low.

Prepare the Mustard Herbed Chicken Breasts according to the recipe instructions. At the point where you add the chicken breasts to the skillet, turn the burner under the beans to high. Complete cooking the chicken breasts.

While the chicken breasts and the beans are completing their cooking, put the salads on the table and drizzle the salad dressing over them.

Remove the chicken breasts from the cooking liquid and put them on the plates.

Whisk the not/Starch into the remaining liquid and simmer until it thickens. Spoon a bit of the thickened liquid over the chicken breasts.

Remove the beans from the stove, turn off the burner, and drain the beans thoroughly. Add salt, pepper, and butter to your own person taste and put them on the dinner plates.

Take the plates to the table, call everyone to dinner, and sit down to a well-deserved, relaxing meal.

And, finally, here’s the recipes:

Mustard Herbed Chicken Breasts Recipe

  • 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons dried tarragon
  • 2 tablespoons dried thyme
  • salt
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 2 teaspoons grainy mustard
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon not/Starch

Using a mallet, pound the chicken breasts and flatten them to 1/4-inch thickness.

Combine oil, vinegar, tarragon, thyme, salt, black pepper, mustard, and Worcestershire sauce, blending well. Pour into a large nonstick skillet and heat over medium high heat.

Add chicken to the liquid and cook for about 5 minutes, or until chicken is no longer pink, turning pieces over once.

Serves 4.

Anytime Bean Medley Recipe

  • 1 can waxed beans
  • 1 package frozen cut green beans, thawed or
  • butter
  • salt and pepper to (taste)

Open the can of waxed beans and drain the liquid into a saucepan. Cut the waxed beans into 1 to 1 1/2-inch pieces.

Add the thawed cut green beans to the saucepan. Or, if you are using canned green beans, drain the liquid into the saucepan and then cut them into 1 to 1 1/2-inch pieces. Add the beans to the saucepan with the waxed beans.

Cook over high heat until thoroughly heated and the green beans (if frozen) and tender. (If you are using canned green beans, you will only need to heat them thoroughly.)

Drain the beans thoroughly and add butter, salt, and pepper to suit your own personal taste.

Serves 4 – 6.

***Note: Leftovers reheat well, and are very nice for lunch the next day.

Spinach and Strawberry Salad Recipe

  • 1 package prewashed spinach, stems removed
  • 12 strawberries
  • 12 mushrooms
  • Ken’s Steakhouse Raspberry Vinaigrette salad dressing

Remove the stems from the spinach and tear into bite-sized pieces. Divide spinach evenly into 4 salad bowls. Wash strawberries, remove green tops, and slice in half. Cut a small “V” out of the top of each strawberry to make it heart-shaped. Distribute 6 strawberry hearts and 1/4 of the sliced mushrooms evenly among the bowls. Drizzle raspberry vinaigrette salad dressing over each to taste.

Serves 4.

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