Sometimes the simplest marinades impart the most flavor.
Here, the pungency of mustard transforms chicken breasts in a matter of minutes. The flavor of the quick-acting marinade is reinforced by a simple vinaigrette that is drizzled over both main and side dish.
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 tablespoons coarse-grain mustard
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 1 1/2 pounds)
- 1 bunch asparagus (about 1 pound), ends trimmed
- 1 medium red onion
- Freshly ground black pepper
In a large bowl, whisk together 1 tablespoon of the oil and 2 tablespoons of the mustard. Set aside.
Pat the chicken dry and season on both sides with salt and pepper to taste. Place each breast between 2 sheets of wax paper or plastic wrap and, using your hand, a skillet or a rolling pin, gently flatten it to an even thickness of about 1/2 inch. Add it to the mustard mixture and turn to coat. Set aside to marinate while you prepare the vegetables.
Trim the tough ends from the asparagus. Peel the onion and cut it into 1/2-inch-thick rings. Place the asparagus and onion on a cutting board, platter or plate, drizzle with 1 tablespoon oil and toss to coat.
You may use a grill, grill pan or broiler on medium-high heat. If using the broiler, line the broiler pan with aluminum foil. Grill or broil the asparagus and onions, turning as necessary, until tender and just barely charred at the edges, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer to a platter or individual plates.
Transfer the chicken to the grill or pan, discarding any excess marinade. Grill or broil the chicken, turning once, until cooked through, 7 to 10 minutes.
In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining 2 tablespoons oil, 1 tablespoon mustard and salt and pepper to taste.
Transfer the chicken to a cutting board, slice it thinly and arrange the slices on the platter or plates. Drizzle the vegetables and chicken with mustard vinaigrette.
Adapted from the June 2004 issue of Everyday Food.
Tested by Renee Schettler.
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