Creating recipes isn't a pastime—it's a passion. And a lot of fun.

The rules are few: Use 99% fresh ingredients (or thereabouts); make the dish simple but flavorful; make the dish flavorful but simple; be creative, not silly.

With this blog, I want to share new recipes, along with tips on ingredients and preparation, and, hopefully, show new cooks (and non-cooks) the pleasure in setting the table with a delicious homemade meal. The Briny Lemon is about fresh, simple, flavorful ingredients and easy cooking methods that help you bring the best to your family table. Your comments are welcome!

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Pan-Seared Chicken Tenders with Pineapple-Bourbon Sauce

This one-skillet dinner is about layering flavors—from the smoky, spice-rubbed chicken tenders to the seared peppers and pineapple chunks to the silky sauce with a hint of bourbon that gives the dish a sweet and buttery finish.

The recipe is quick and easy to put together, but the flavor combination turns this casual, no-fuss dish into a very inviting dinner. Serve the chicken, vegetables, and fruit over a bed of rice for a satisfying, flavor-packed meal.

  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 chicken tenders (about 1-1/4 lbs total)
  • 4 tsp olive oil, divided
  • 1 8-oz can pineapple chunks, drained, juice reserved, chunks halved
  • 1 medium red bell pepper, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup very thinly sliced red onion
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 tbsp bourbon
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 cups cooked rice
Sauce Ingredients
  1. Preheat the oven to its lowest temperature (to keep the chicken warm).
  2. Combine the cumin, garlic powder, oregano, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Rub the spice mixture all over the chicken tenders. Let stand 20 minutes. (May also cover and refrigerate 4 hours.)
  3. Heat a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat and brush with 2 teaspoons of oil. Sear the chicken (without crowding) until browned and just cooked through, about 5 minutes per side. (If your skillet isn’t large enough to hold all the chicken tenders in a single layer, work in 2 batches, using a little extra oil.)
  4. Transfer the tenders to an ovenproof plate and keep warm. Do not wipe out the skillet.
Spice-Rubbed Chicken Tenders 
Tenders Beginning to Sear
Pan-Seared Chicken Tenders
  1. Brush the skillet with the remaining 2 teaspoons of oil. Add the pineapple chunks, bell pepper, and onion and season with salt and pepper. Sear until tender and beginning to brown, 5-6 minutes. Transfer the pineapple mixture to a bowl.
  2. Reduce the heat to medium-low and melt the butter in the skillet. Add the reserved pineapple juice, bourbon, and sugar. Cook, scraping up brown bits, 3 minutes.
  3. Return the chicken tenders (with accumulated juices) and pineapple mixture to the skillet and stir gently into the sauce.
Pineapple Mixture Beginning to Cook
Seared Pineapple Mixture 
Sauce Mixture 
Chicken and Pineapple Mixture Returned
Serve the chicken mixture overtop rice, spooning leftover pan juices over all.

Pan-Seared Chicken Tenders with Pineapple-Bourbon Sauce

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