Black Sesame Chicken Breasts with Kiwi
How’s this look for lunch? Easy, quick and beautiful!
We sat outside yesterday after the big North Carolina rain and enjoyed the sparkling clean landscape. And the “post-rain” sounds are great — the dripping from the trees and the local cardinal conversation.
This recipe is easy and very forgiving. You can’t screw it up — except for one thing. Don’t cook it on high heat — you’ll burn it and then you won’t have pretty chicken OR dressing. Oh, dear. But let’s not go there.
Keep that burner down a bit and you’ll have a beautiful lunch.
I had never worked with Black Sesame seeds until recently and I like them. They add a lot of deep color and character to light proteins — chicken and fish. Black Sesame seeds look gorgeous on salmon, for instance.
In California, I probably got the Black and Brown Sesame Seeds at Mother’s Market.
But if you don’t live near a health food store, simply go to http://goldminenaturalfood.com/. They have all sorts of fabulous food and they ship. Problem solved.
Black and Brown Sesame Chicken Breast Salad with Kiwi
For the Dressing
1/3 c. pan scrapings, some of the surplus sesame dijon mixture from the pan
Juice of 1/2 jucy lime (if they aren’t too juicy, you might need the whole thing
1. T balsamic vinegar
Mix and adjust as needed for the number of people you are serving. This makes dressing (a light amount) for about 3 people. If you go heavier on the dressing, just make more. Double or triple it. You can use it tomorrow.
For the Chicken
About 2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/4 c. dijon mustard
1 T. Olive Oil
2 T. aguave or honey
Juice of 1 lime
3/4 c. Gold Mine mixed black and brown organic sesame seeds (any proportion is fine)
Your favorite lettuces, a healthy handful per person. Use mixed baby lettuce, spinach, chopped Romaine, oak, Boston butter lettuce, red or green chard, whatever. And used several kinds if you like.
1 Kiwi per person, sliced
Directions: Mix the dijon, oil, aguave or honey and the lime juice together in a flat-ish bowl or pie pan or something with low sides. Set aside.
Rinse the mixture of black and brown sesame seeds and spread them on a cookie sheet and dry them in the oven. (Ideally do this ahead of time.) Otherwise, wet sesame seeds don’t stick to the chicken…. In a pinch, I have also totally ignored (!) the rinsing directions and just used them straight out of the package when I’m in a hurry. Your choice. Both ways work and I didn’t die from the natural tannic acid on the seeds.
Put the sesame seeds in another bowl with low sides (easier for dipping and getting to the saute pan).
Have a saute pan ready with olive oil for sauteing. Dip one chicken breast in the mustard mixture and coat well. Then drag it in the sesame seeds and coat well. Put in pan (listen for a sizzle, but not high heat). Repeat with other chicken breasts. Usually 3 or 4 breasts to a 2 lb. package.
If there are any sesame seeds left or sauce, just add it to the pan. Saute on medium heat until not pink in the center. Cut one breast in half to check. It’s OK to cut one — you’re going to slice the chicken breast anyway.
You can put a lid over the pan (ajar) so some steam escapes part way through cooking. Keeps the chicken most and steams it a bit.
Put cooked chicken breasts on a plate and slice across. Mix salad with dressing and put on plates. Add sliced kiwis on the side. Place chicken breast slices on top of salad. Add a tablespoon or so of dijon/sesame mixture from the pan on top of the chicken for garnish. You can squeeze extra lime over it if you like.
For some reason the kiwi goes just beautifully with this dish. The tastes compliment each other. But if you don’t have kiwi, try another vegetable or fruit — try cucumbers and tomatoes — and see how you like them. Many combinations will work, it just depends on what you like.