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Dinner guest requesting chicken

I am having guest over for dinner next friday before my son's play. I will walk in the door from work at 4 and will need to have dinner on the table by 5:15. Chicken is my least favorite meat to cook for guest. I am in need of a no fail yummy chicken recipe. Thanks!!

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  1. Chicken parmesan can be made ahead of time and isn't overwhelmingly "chicken-y". All you 'll need to do is make some pasta and toss a salad.

    1. Roast a chicken. Have it ready to go in the oven in the morning (stuff with fresh herbs, a lemon cut in half, maybe some onion or shallot). Get home, turn oven on as high as it will go, take chicken out of fridge. At 4:15, put chicken in oven (brush with olive oil or rub with butter if you like), put timer on for 25 minutes. At 4:40, turn oven down to 425 and put timer on for 20 minutes - then check it, may need another five minutes. Remove from oven, let rest ten minutes, serve at 5:15.

      7 Replies
      1. re: MMRuth

        That's a great idea, however I would not pre-stuff the chicken. Put chicken and stuffing in fridge - in separate containers, then when you're ready to cook the chicken stuff and follow MMR's next directions....It might add a few minutes to her time table, but it's safer.

        1. re: Gio

          Interesting - I didn't think of that in terms of the stuffing. I know about not stuffing a bird with stuffing that you are going to eat ahead of time - what's the risk with the herbs/onions/lemons? Thanks!

          To the OP - I would also quickly truss it - I'm finding that the bird does cook more evenly that way.

        2. re: MMRuth

          I was just thinking of the chancey food safety issue with the lemon, et al sitting in the bird all day even tho it's in the fridge. The no-no of pre-stuffing anything is ingrained, I guess....

          1. re: Gio

            Stuffing (like turkey stuffing) is far different than throwing some herbs and a lemon in the cavity. There's no need to be scared of that and we need to be clear on the difference and the reasons why.

            1. re: HaagenDazs

              I agree, the food safety issues of using a bread stuffing are many, but simply adding aromatics to the cavity do not increase any health risks.

              Dense, moist stuffings, heat slowly, are full of things that microbes love, and if they are not cooked to 165 degrees, can be just as dangerous as undercooked chicken.

          2. re: MMRuth

            Jfood agrees with MM on the roasted chocken. And with a 3.5-4# bird bring the oven to 425 and the bird should be ready in 35-40 minutes. MM's 45 is safer but it has never been an issue with 40 at 425 and you may know that jfood is a little conservative in the kitchen.

            If you cut into pieces, also consider making some potato wedges and toss them around the whole or cut up chicken. Then when the fat renders is cooks the potatoes to a glorious finish. May cause a belch or two at the play.

            1. re: jfood

              I agree with the roast chicken. I've been doing a kosher bird lately rubbed with herbs and stuffed with lemon. My favorite thing is the potatoes that cook in the fat. I get yukons or red potatoes, parboil them early in the day, let them dry out a bit, and then toss them in coarse dijon mustard with a glug of olive oil beaten into it. Let the potatoes get beat up a bit. Sprinkle them with coarse salt. I toss those around the bird. I take the bird out when it hits temp and then toss the potatoes again in the drippings and turn on the broiler. YUM. I am not a chicken eater (really) but those potatoes justify fussing with raw poultry for my sweetie.

          3. I have a chicken casserole dish using b/s chicken breasts, stuffing, cream sauce and mushrooms (optional). You can make ahead of time, refrigerate and bake when you get home. There is a gourmet version of this using homemade bechamel sauce, or a quick version using cream of mushroom soup. Let me know if either interests you.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Diane in Bexley

              I would like this recipe, Diane, if you have time to post it. Thanks in advance! mary

            2. I vote for roasting or doing a stuffed chicken breast of some kind. Biba has a nice, simple recipe for pan roasted chicken. Melt two tablespoons butter in a large skillet, add rosemary, crushed garlic and a frying chicken cut into serving pieces (you can also do breasts, just adjust the cooking time). Brown chicken on all sides - S&P. Add 1/2 cup of dry white wine, cover and simmer for 30 minutes or so. Remove chicken to platter, boil remaining sauce until it thickens (add more wine if it is too thick). Spoon over chicken and serve. It's simple and hearty, flavorful and yummy. Serve with a simple risotto (or, if pressed for time, couscous) and a roasted or grilled seasonal vegetable.

              For stuffed chicken, I love either stuffing with mushrooms/garlic/parm or ham/provolone. You can either drizzle some oil, S&P and bake for 20 minutes. Or bread (I like homemade breadcrumbs, parm and almonds) and bake.

              With so little time, chicken is an idea option!

              1. I'm going to go against everyone - if you don't like to serve chicken, then a roast chicken isn't for you! I'd get some chicken thighs, brown them, and then add liquid and cook until they're done. They'll be juicy and delicious, not too chickeny, and fast. You could play with endless variations. Thinking Italian? Use onions, garlic, red peppers, mushrooms, basil, and white whine. Thinking French? How about sherry and mushrooms and cream at the end.

                1 Reply
                1. re: katecm

                  I'd have to agree. Roast chicken is, well, very chicken-y, which doesn't go over well if you're not good on the serving chicken aspect. Jumping on this post, how about something like the Ina Garten's chicken bouillabaise or a quick-ish coq au vin? (I believe both are a touch more time consuming than the OP has time but I can think of a few modifications that would allow them to be made within the time span quoted - but then, with the coq au vin, someone suggested a crock pot below.)