Chick Magnet Chicken

by Jessica Harper
Print Email

ChickMagnetChickenG 2159My nephew, who lives in a tiny New York apartment, called me with a recipe emergency. He’d invited a new Potential Girlfriend (PGF) over for dinner and wanted to cook something that was cheap and easy but impressive. I thought this was ambitious for a guy whose cooking skills are limited to pouring cereal and microwaving popcorn, but I had an idea.

Henry’s understanding of ingredients is, shall we say, unsophisticated; he has probably never spoken the words “paprika” or “fennel.” But he did well with the shopping list I gave him, texting me only once when he was bewildered by varieties of olive oil.

We began Skype instruction two hours before the PGF’s ETA. “So, first you preheat your oven to 350 degrees,” I said.

After a brief silence, Henry admitted that the oven was where he keeps his shoes. After a less brief silence on my end, I told him to get the (damn) shoes out of his oven and call me back. We hung up, resuming instruction five minutes later when Henry’s oven was vacated.

“Okay, turn the oven on. 350 degrees,” I said.

“Um….I’m not, like, a hundred percent sure how to…”

“Henry? Call the super. Figure it out. Call me back.”

Henry called me back twenty minutes later, his oven hot. “I’ve got this,” he said, proudly. I talked him through the recipe slowly, partly because it was hard for Henry to get his mind around food-related information, but also to allow time for the oven to burn off any residual traces of shoe. No PGF is seduced by chicken that tastes like loafers.

Henry told me the next day that the PGF gave the chicken two thumbs up. He also told me that she had provided side dishes, at which point I asked him if it was too soon to talk marriage. At least I hope he gets her to drop the P and move up to full-fledged GF status, although he’ll have to make room in the oven for some Kate Spades.

Chick Magnet Chicken

2 chicken breast halves, skin on, bone in, about 8 ounces each
2 tablespoons Boursin cheese
1 tablespoon olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1. Preheat the oven to 350° F.

2. Place the chicken breast halves, skin side up, in a baking dish. Using your fingers, gently lift the skin of one piece of chicken and spread one tablespoon of cheese on the breast under the skin. Replace the skin and press lightly to distribute the cheese evenly on the breast. Brush the chicken all over with olive oil. Repeat with the other chicken piece.

3. Sprinkle the chicken with the salt and pepper, place it in the oven and cook it until the skin is golden brown and the cheese is mostly melted, about 50-55 minutes. Allow the chicken to rest for five minutes, then serve.

Jessica Harper is an actor/author who lives in Los Angeles and New York. Her latest book is "The Crabby Cook Cookbook," and she also blogs at http://www.jessicaharper.com and at http://www.thecrabbycook.com.

Comments have been closed for this piece.

 

restaurant news

Row 34
Boston
by Kitty Kaufman

Row 34 7Row 34 is party central for non-stop oysters. It's the place for shrimp, lobster rolls, ceviche, Cape littlenecks, pâtés of trout and bluefish, and mussels with fried green tomatoes. Drink? 25...

Read more...
Capogiro
Philadelphia
by Laura Johnson

gelatofruit.jpg Just recently my mother asked me to pick up some vanilla ice cream she wanted to serve with a pie she had made. I came home with a gallon of 'Pet' vanilla ice cream. She asked me why, out of all...

Read more...
Olio Pizzeria
Los Angeles
by Maia Harari

ImageI think there might be a reason most of the neutral or positive reviews of Olio Pizzeria focus mainly on breakfast. Their overhyped pizza crust tastes like english muffins. And, unfortunately,...

Read more...
Beer Belly
Los Angeles
by Maia Harari

beerbellygrilledI'm pretty sure LA is the only place that it can be hard to find a restaurant marked by a gigantic neon sign. That's because in a city that's made up of a string of strip malls, neon signs are...

Read more...