Did you guess it? The theme of the week is….ORANGES.
Mostly because oranges were on sale at the grocery store… but also because they remind me of summer. The weather here has been great, way too warm for February, so it only seemed appropriate. I was going to post this yesterday, but since it was Valentine’s Day, it felt wrong to post an entirely un-Valentiney recipe. Plus, I was busy hanging out with a group of Marines. True story.
Obviously, I’m single, so I decided to just ignore the holiday this year. I’m not going to feel smug about being above it, nor sad about not being with a romantic boyfriend. But during my four mile run (training for the ol’ 8K), I really needed inspiration to keep me going during that last mile. And I found that inspiration in promising myself a fancy cocktail if I made it without stopping. After the run, I hit the showers, threw on a dress, and went to my favorite restaurant (which has been mentioned here before: Acadiana). I went around 4:30 to avoid the Valentine’s rush, and sat down at the bar to order myself a drink. I also decided to go ahead and order myself some pulled pork BBQ sliders served on buttermilk biscuits. I mean, I ran four miles. Why not?
To my great luck, there happened to be a large group of Marines just down the bar from me, and they quickly adopted me as their collective Valentine and supplied me with as many drinks as I could handle. They were very sweet and entertaining, and I have to say it was the most fun I’ve ever had on Valentine’s Day. (Sorry ex-boyfriends…the chocolates were fine, but it just doesn’t beat drinking sweet tea vodka with a bunch of Marines…)
Then I came home and watched a series of sappy movies on TV, including The Ugly Truth and The Proposal. Why is Gerard Butler such a fox? Though I do prefer him in 300…
But onto the chicken. This is sort of a Chinese food knockoff. I’d like to think it’s healthier than your standard Chinese fare, but I’m not going to make any claims. You could also serve it over rice, I just didn’t have any, so I used orzo.
Orange Honey Chicken
½ cup uncooked orzo
2 tbsp honey
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
¼ cup orange juice
1 tsp orange zest
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cornstarch
1 chicken breast, cut into about 1 inch cubes
½ tbsp butter
Boil water in a small pot and cook orzo as directed, drain and set aside.
While orzo cooks, mix honey, balsamic vinegar, orange juice, orange zest, cornstarch and salt in a small bowl. Set bowl aside.
Heat medium skillet over medium heat, melt butter and add chicken. Just toss occasionally until chicken is browned and cooked through.
While chicken cooks, pour sauce into a separate small skillet and heat over medium heat. Stir until thickened, about 8-10 minutes.
Once chicken is done and sauce is thickened, put orzo on a plate, top with chicken and pour sauce on top.