Cajun Chicken with Quinoa
First of all, I hope you all had an amazing Easter. I know I did, because I completely spoiled myself with food! And I am going to take a wild guess and assume you did too. The festive food, the chocolate, whatever it may have been, perhaps it is time to make a balance after a day like Easter. And that is why I am sharing this amazing Cajun chicken dish.
We are talking moist, tender, fragrant and spicy goodness. Wait…..Chicken breasts…moist and tender? Absolutely, if a chicken breast is ever dry, it means you have either overcooked it, or you have sliced into it and have left it for too long before serving it. But there is more, if you like to watch a lot of cooking shows, YouTube channels, read a lot of food blogs etc. You may already know about this. But if you leave chicken to soak in a dairy product such as milk or yogurt overnight, and then you cook that bad boy the next day. Goodness gracious hallelujah! You would never believe a chicken breast can be so dang tender.
Supposedly, there is an enzyme in the milk that denature the proteins in the chicken. Therefore you are left with a very soft piece of meat. Most of the time this is done with buttermilk to make Cajun fried dishes. And to be honest I think that this technique works best with buttermilk, so feel free to use it if you wish. However, keep in mind that the idea behind this recipe is keep it healthy, which is why I used regular milk.
Oh by the way, that Cajun spice mixture will be your bea (your perfect lover). It will last for ages in your dry store cupboard, meaning it will stay faithful and it won’t run away. It can be used on so many different ingredients even when roasting vegetables, meaning it will be there for you through the good times and the bad. Whatever you use this spice mix on will be like sex in your mouth. Oh and it is spicy, which means it is hot 😉
If you are not a big fan of spicy food then you can always just tone down the Cayenne pepper and the black pepper.
Once again, I hope your Easter was amazing and I hope you enjoy this recipe if you choose to cook it. Finally, make sure you subscribe if you haven’t already to stay updated for new recipes. Have a great day!!
- 4 chicken breasts
- Aprox. Half a litre of milk
- 3 teaspoons of salt
- 2 teaspoons of ground black pepper
- 3 teaspoons of garlic powder
- 3 teaspoons of onion powder
- 1½ teaspoons of Cayenne pepper
- 3 teaspoons of paprika
- 2 teaspoons of dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon of dried oregano
- 1 cup of quinoa
- 2 cups of chicken stock/broth
- 2 tablespoons of grape seed oil
- 1/2 a teaspoon of mustard seeds
- 1 medium brown onion peeled and finely chopped
- 1 clove of garlic peeled and finely chopped
- Half a cucumber cut in half lengthways, core removed by using a spoon to scoop out the seeds then sliced
- Half a red bell pepper/capsicum de-seeded then finely diced
- Flat leaf parsley roughly chopped
- Salt and pepper for seasoning
- 1 avocado cut in half, stone removed, peeled then sliced
- Mix the salt, black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, cayenne pepper, dried thyme and dried oregano in bowl to make your Cajun spice mix.
- Put your milk and chicken breasts in a large bowl to soak the chicken. It is recommended that you soak the chicken overnight to make it more tender, or you can just move on to the next step.
- Put a baking tray in the oven and then pre-heat to 200 degrees Celsius. It is important that you pre-heat the tray so that it is hot and ready for the chicken.
- Transfer your chicken breasts to a plate or board, then sprinkle about a teaspoon of the Cajun spice mix over each chicken breast. Next, get your hands in there and rub the spice mix all over the meat.
- Take the baking tray out of the oven then carefully line with baking paper. Place the chicken breasts on the hot baking tray meaty side up.
- Put back in the oven and bake for 20 minutes. If they are large chicken breasts cook them for an extra 2-3 minutes.
- While your chicken is baking you can start on this lovely quick quinoa dish. Get your quinoa in a bowl, then soak in water for about a minute. Use a sieve to drain the quinoa and then quickly give it one last rinse under running water. This helps to wash away the bitter taste. Set aside.
- Preheat a pot to about medium-high heat. Add your grape-seed oil, then add your mustard seeds and cover straight away. You will start to hear those mustard seeds pop.
- After about a minute when the popping calms down add your onions and garlic then fry them for 1-2 minutes.
- Next, add your quinoa and your chicken stock then stir through. Bring the mixture to a boil, then turn the heat down to a gentle simmer and cover again. Cook for about 15-20 minutes or until the liquid has evaporated and the quinoa is cooked through. Allow the quinoa to cool down for a couple of minutes, then add your cucumber, red pepper and parsley.
- Once you have cooked the chicken and taken it out of the oven let it rest for a minute or 2. If you need to heat it back up in the oven again for half a minute feel free. But if you wan't to slice the chicken, only do so just as your about to serve. Otherwise the chicken will dry out.
- Serve the chicken with the quinoa and garnish with the avocado and any leftover parsley you may have.
- It is recommended that you soak the chicken in the milk overnight to get the best result, so make sure you read through the recipe and prepare in advance if you wish to do so.
Talk to you all soon!!