Citrus Makes a Bright, Sunshiny Day!

Today has been a particularly bitter day, and I'm not talking about the weather, which is actually quite pleasant for Las Vegas in the August. I believe that my displeasure with life has once again crept back out from under that huge boulder I've been trying to hide all my feelings under since like forever. Admittedly, I've been out of sorts for the past couple of months (work stuff that I can't help but take home with me), so it's probably no surprise that I woke up this morning feeling sassy and combative. I was in no mood to tackle any weighty, complex recipes today, so I went for bright and simple. 

Looking at these roasted bell peppers on the plate immediately put me into a better mood, and the tangy zip from the lemons and limes combined with the lingering anise flavor of the tarragon had my palate singing. I realize it's a bad idea to allow food to dictate my emotions, but one bite of this put me right as rain. I hope it puts you in a good mood too.

I love using mason jars. They make fantastic dressing and beverage shakers in addition to their other storage uses. You can make this marinade in advance and store it in the fridge for up to three weeks!

Since I was cooking these pretty soon, I opted to marinate the chicken in a bowl. When I prep these overnight for a BBQ, I'll seal them in a plastic bag to get better coverage.

Don't be afraid to over lap the vegetables with the meat. Share some of the flavor.

You want to get the food close to the heat when you're broiling.

Citrus Chicken and Vegetables

You Will Need:

1 chicken breast, halved and trimmed
1 eggplant, sliced
1 zucchini, sliced
1 cup baby bell peppers
3/4 C olive oil
2 limes, zested and juiced
1 lemon, zested and juiced
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tbsp dijon mustard
1 tbsp fresh tarragon, finely chopped
Kosher salt and pepper to taste

In a mason jar or shaker, shake together the oil, juice, zest, vinegar, garlic, mustard, herbs, salt, and pepper. Pour over the chicken, cover and refrigerate for 1 hour. Add the vegetables and refrigerate for another 30 minutes.**

Heat broiler to high heat and set the oven rack to the highest setting.*

Arrange the chicken and vegetables on a wire rack set over a sheet pan. Place in the oven and broil for 8-10 minutes until the chicken springs back quickly when pressed or the internal temp is 160.***

*Feeling adventurous? Want to play with fire? Maybe show the neighbors that grill in the backyard isn't another glorified lawn ornament covered in last summer's dust and lawn clippings. Pull out that grill and fire it up. I can certainly applaude flexing your culinary muscles in front of the neighbors. Those uppity so-and-so's with their perfectly manicured lawn and clean cars with matching hubcaps need to be put in their place. Go on you magnificent bastard! I applaude you!
** If you want to marinate the chicken over night, go for it. Just don't add the vegetables until about 30 minutes to an hour before you cook them. They are very naive and easily influenced by stronger flavors. Don't let them lose their sparkle!
***Calm your Jones! The carry over cooking after removing the chicken from the oven will take care of those last few degrees so your chicken is moist inside rather than dried out like most dry heat cooked chicken.


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