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Ina’s Lemon Chicken

I am TOO suggestible. It has always been a problem for me. Yesterday, I went to the gym with a dinner menu in mind, but while on the treadmill I watched an episode of Barefoot Contessa where she makes lemon chicken, and what do I do? Walk next door to Whole Foods and buy the ingredients for lemon chicken. I’ve been disinterested in chicken for a few months now, but watching the white wine, garlic and lemon bubble around chicken with crispy browned skin…I was convinced. Watching the Food Network while working out is tricky. Sometimes it can act as a motivator when you think about the work out as the way to justify eating that Chocolate Honey Almond Tart I’m staring at. Other times, it just makes me hungry and eager to get home.
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I only made half of this recipe:

1/4 cup good olive oil
3 tablespoons minced garlic (9 cloves)
1/3 cup dry white wine
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest (2 lemons)
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme leaves
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 boneless chicken breasts, skin on (6 to 8 ounces each)
1 lemon

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Warm the olive oil in a small saucepan over medium-low heat, add the garlic, and cook for just 1 minute but don’t allow the garlic to turn brown. Off the heat, add the white wine, lemon zest, lemon juice, oregano, thyme, and 1 teaspoon salt and pour into a 9 by 12-inch baking dish.

Pat the chicken breasts dry and place them skin side up over the sauce. Brush the chicken breasts with olive oil and sprinkle them liberally with salt and pepper. Cut the lemon in 8 wedges and tuck it among the pieces of chicken.

Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, depending on the size of the chicken breasts, until the chicken is done and the skin is lightly browned. If the chicken isn’t browned enough, put it under the broiler for 2 minutes. Cover the pan tightly with aluminum foil and allow to rest for 10 minutes. Sprinkle with salt and serve hot with the pan juices.
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I served the chicken with basmati rice and grilled summer squash – on my new grill pan!! Thanks to Evan’s parents for the William Sonoma gift card 😉
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Monday night’s in the summer, a group called Screen on the Green set up a large screen in between the Washington Monument and the Capitol to play classic movies. Evan’s been wanting to go to this for months, so since it wasn’t 100 million degrees outside, I agreed to go. It was a pretty incredible setting, and the movie In the Heat of the Night was very relevant to the book I’m reading (The Help). We brought lawn chairs, but were a little unprepared compared to the people around us. Next week we’ll be sure to bring some drinks and snacks!

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