Saturday, August 11, 2012

Parmesan-Crusted Chicken with Arugula Salad

While Boyfriend has been visiting his homeland of Washington D.C. for the month, I've been doing a lot less cooking and a whole lot of nothing. 

I don't really like cooking for myself. Half of the satisfaction of cooking comes from watching other people enjoy what I've made. Of course, I have friends and roommates that would be more than happy to eat my food, but everyone is on a different schedule, and it's just really hard to plan around that. 

Without anyone to cook for, I've been living on the last few survivors in our fridge, which include shredded cheese, spinach, and vodka (Did I mention I HATE grocery shopping?). It seems pointless to buy a bunch of food for myself, when most of it will go bad before I get a chance to eat it. And it seems even more pointless to cook for myself when I won't eat left overs. What a waste, right?

Needless to say, before today, I was starving. I'd have pretty much given anything to cook something delicious and shamelessly inhale it. 

It's a good thing I spent the day with my mom, and Boyfriend sent me a recipe to try!

My mom just got back from a health and wellness retreat that sounded like a concentration camp, so she's on a pretty serious health kick. This recipe, from Food & Wine, was a perfect 288 calories per serving without sacrificing a thing in the flavor department.

Parmesan-Crusted Chicken with Arugula Salad
(Makes 4 servings)


  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon chopped thyme
  • Four 6-ounce skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (1 1/2 ounces)
  • 4 cups packed arugula leaves (Or spring mix!)
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved


  1. Preheat the oven to 475°.
  2.  In a small bowl, combine 2 teaspoons of the mustard with 2 teaspoons of the olive oil and the thyme. 
  3. Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper, then brush them all over with the mustard mixture. 
  4. Pat 2 tablespoons of the Parmesan all over each breast. 
  5. Transfer the chicken breasts to a rimmed baking sheet. Bake the chicken on the top shelf of the oven for about 15 minutes, or until just cooked through and nicely browned.
  6. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine the remaining 1 teaspoon each of mustard and olive oil; stir in 1/2 teaspoon of water. 
  7. Add the arugula and tomatoes, season with salt and pepper and toss well. 
  8. Spoon the salad onto plates, top with the chicken and serve.

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