Bake chicken once for two to eat twice

Have you ever had one of those busy buzz-by days when you suddenly realize it’s time to start preparing dinner and you have no idea what that will be? I was having one of those days. I went to the freezer, thinking some digging around through the meat shelf might give me some ideas. I found a freezer bag holding four big bone-in chicken breasts. Okay, those would become supper.

I didn’t have a lot of time to think about how I’d prepare them. While the chicken was thawing in a bowl of cold water, it gave time to think of some options. I figured a little seasoning and some time in the oven would do the trick. I thought about using a technique my mom often turned to. When I was about 11 years old, I remember her instructing me to place cleaned and trimmed chicken pieces in a foil-lined baking dish, dot the chicken with little knobs of butter, sprinkle everything with salt, pepper and paprika and put it in the oven to bake. Easy. Quick.

I didn’t have much time for meal preparation, but I wanted a little more than buttered baked chicken. I went to one of my favorite old church cookbooks and found inspiration.

I sliced a small onion and scattered them in a small baking dish, making a bed for a couple of the chicken breasts. I decided to store the remaining two chicken breasts in the refrigerator for another meal within the next couple of days. Parmesan cheese, cream and seasonings and fresh garlic are all it took to get the meat ready for the oven.

As the chicken neared the end of its baking time, I heated up some leftover Layered Autumn Vegetable Crisp from the refrigerator. A salad of fresh greens or some sliced fruit rounds out the meal.

This chicken dish is just right when you’re cooking for two. The chicken breasts I used were so large, my husband and I split one breast and saved the other for slicing up to use on sandwiches or salad.

Using bone-in chicken breasts delivers great flavor and moist, juicy texture. I did remove the skin from the breasts before baking. Heavy cream poured over the top of the breasts helps seal in the moisture. I always use an instant-read digital thermometer to test the doneness of the meat.

This chicken was so good, I wound up using the two uncooked breasts in the refrigerator to prepare this recipe again a couple of days later.

Prepare this quick and easy baked chicken for two. You’ll bake once and eat at least twice.

This will be a recipe I’ll be using often during busy days leading up to the holidays. I’ll have a stash of bone-in chicken breasts in the freezer and cream in the refrigerator.

Breast of Chicken (For Two to Eat Twice)

  • 1 small onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 bone-in chicken breast havles
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • Paprika
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed (or more if you like)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Butter a shallow baking dish that will hold the two chicken breast halves. Place the onion slices in the baking dish in an even layer. Place grated cheese on waxed paper. Coat chicken on all sides with cheese. Lay chicken on top of onion slices. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Slowly pour heavy whipping cream over chicken. Sprinkle with Italian seasoning and paprika. Push smashed garlic cloves into the top of chicen breasts. Slide the chicken into the oven and bake for 45 to 60 minutes, until meat is cooked through.

2 thoughts on “Bake chicken once for two to eat twice

  1. I loved this recipe – and loved that I could actually print it out in its entirety. I usually can’t do that. I get just part of the recipe – never all of it. Is that the Globe’s format problem? Can that be ‘fixed?’ Surely others must have this complaint!

  2. Your plate looks so inviting! Nice styling. I love to cook once and eat twice. In fact, I often make double pasta, rice or potatoes so that I have a side dish almost ready to serve for a night later in the week.

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