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Chicken Sauté with Sugar Snaps and Asparagus

Sugar snap peas and asparagus are at the peak of their season in spring and add crisp contrast to tender chicken. Sautéing the ingredients quickly in a small amount of oil keeps everything tasting clean. Serve over brown aromatic rice.

Ingredients:

  • All-purpose flour for dredging
  • 10 oz. chicken tenders
  • Coarse kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 1 bunch thin asparagus, about 1/2 lb., ends trimmed
  • 1/2 lb. sugar snap peas, strings removed
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 Tbs. minced fresh thyme, plus more for garnish
  • 1 Tbs. minced fresh chives, plus more for garnish
  • 2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
  • Lemon zest strips for garnish (optional)

Directions:

Spread flour on a plate. Cut the chicken tenders in half crosswise. Season the chicken with salt and pepper, then dredge in the flour.

In a large nonstick fry pan over medium-high heat, warm 1 Tbs. of the olive oil. Add the chicken and sauté until just cooked through, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate.

Add the remaining 1 Tbs. olive oil to the pan and reduce the heat to medium. Add the asparagus and sauté for 1 minute. Add the sugar snap peas and increase the heat to medium-high. Season the vegetables with salt and pepper and sauté for 1 minute. Add the broth and bring to a boil, stirring to scrape up the browned bits from the pan bottom. Cover the pan and boil until the vegetables are almost crisp-tender, about 3 minutes.

Return the chicken to the pan. Add the 1 Tbs. thyme, the 1 Tbs. chives and the lemon juice. Simmer uncovered, stirring almost constantly, until the sauce thickens and coats the chicken, about 2 minutes. Adjust the seasonings with salt and pepper.

Divide the chicken and vegetables between 2 warmed plates, and garnish with thyme, chives and lemon zest strips. Serve immediately. Serves 2.

Quick Tips: This recipe is a basic format for a quick sauté and lends itself to endless variations, so you can use what’s on hand in your refrigerator. Tarragon or basil would make tasty substitutes for the thyme (if using tarragon, use a little less). Fresh peas are a good alternative to the sugar snap peas, and zucchini can replace the asparagus.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Weeknight Fresh & Fast, by Kristine Kidd (Williams-Sonoma, 2011).