Thursday, April 3, 2014

Mustard Maple Chicken

I'm a pretty big mustard fan. It shows up in a lot of my go-to meals - I mix it into salad dressings, I spread it on pizza dough along with olive oil and garlic on sauce-less pizzas (I did that for the first time on this one), and I add some to most grilled cheeses. Check out what my food heroine Dorie Greenspan says about mustardit "is to the French what ketchup is to [Americans]." (Speaking of ketchup, have you tried the Heinz limited edition flavors, like jalapeño? Interesting.)

That said, I would have thought this mustard maple sauce would be too mustardy even for me - about half of the sauce is pure mustard. But it works, and now I've made this a few times. The sauce is amazing! Evidently the recipe came to Table for Two via the I Love Trader Joe's Cookbook, and Table for Two calls it "Holy Yum Chicken," which I think is kind of a stupid name but I guess it deserves it.

"Holy Yum" Mustard Maple Chicken
From Table for Two

1½ – 2 pounds boneless, skinless, chicken thighs (most of the fat cut and discarded)
½ cup Dijon mustard (must be Dijon mustard, no substitutes)
¼ cup pure maple syrup (again, no substitutes. No fake Aunt Jemima stuff)
1 tbsp. rice wine vinegar (seasoned or unseasoned)
¼ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. ground black pepper
1 tbsp. cornstarch
2 tsp. fresh rosemary for garnish

Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a 8×8 oven-proof pan with 2 layers of tin foil.

In small bowl, whisk together Dijon mustard, maple syrup, rice wine vinegar, salt and pepper.

Place the chicken thighs in the foil layered pan then pour the mixture on top of it. Turn the chicken around in the sauce to make sure it gets all coated. Bake, uncovered, for 40 minutes.

Remove from oven and let chicken sit for 5 minutes then transfer to a plate. Do NOT discard the liquid.

Immediately after plating chicken, whisk in the 1 tbsp. of cornstarch into the liquid in the pan. You’ll create a nice, thick sauce to drizzle over your chicken. You need to do cornstarch mixing immediately because the liquid needs to be hot in order for it to thicken properly. If it’s still not thickening after 1 tbsp., you can add a little more. Sprinkle rosemary on top before serving.

Serve with rice or potatoes or vegetables.

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