Foodsgiving: Disney Dijon Chicken

I love food holidays. It's utterly ridiculous how much fun it is to make up different recipes and confuse my menfolk. I am the weirdo who always wishes she could host a gathering of a zillion, and if my house could seat more than ten people at any given time, I'd be the one hosting every party from SPJ to the choir to the writing group to... well, random strangers.

Now I have an unprecedented MONTH off, as grades have been turned in, I passed everything, and the semester doesn't start until January 14. Naturally I will be spending most of the break writing, shooting, editing and other such things based in earning a living.

But I'll also be COOKING. Yum.

Last night was an old favorite, a variation on the basil cream chicken that comes from the Happiest Place on Earth. I have a number of Disney cookbooks, but this one I stole from my mother's cookbook of Disneyland recipes.


2/3 c. heavy cream
2/3 c. chicken broth
2 tbsp. dijon mustard
1/2 tsp. garlic
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. white pepper
1/4 tsp. chives
chicken of choice (see below)

In a saucepan, simmer the chicken broth for 10 minutes. The original recipe then calls for reducing the liquid by one-third, but I never have, since I like more chicken flavoring and often increase the recipe.

The original recipe also says to add the cream and then the herbs and seasonings. I do it the other way around: add the mustard, garlic, salt, pepper and chives to the simmering broth and mix it up, letting the flavors mingle, before adding the heavy cream. If you aren't making enough sauce, you can double the cream, but then be sure to double the mustard and seasonings as well. Simmer until thickened to your preference.

Meanwhile, bake chicken breasts with the seasoning of your choice. I usually stick with a simple mix of garlic and onion salt, white pepper, basil and perhaps thyme or rosemary. Since the modern boneless skinless chicken breast is decidedly of the Dolly Parton variety, I usually slice them in half, so they go farther and they cook through while still tender and don't become dry.

If you're not a fan of whole chicken breasts, you could cut up the chicken and saute in butter and appropriate seasonings, or you can mix in chopped cooked chicken into the sauce itself. Serve over brown rice (which I always have going in the Instant Pot because I'm too lazy to bother with stovetop, but it's excellent over seasoned wild rice as well).

You can make it with half and half instead of heavy cream, though it takes a lot longer to thicken. It's a bone-simple sauce and if you're using a rice cooker, it's simple enough to start and just bop in and out of the kitchen.

I made this last night with a simple side salad, and if I weren't being lazy, fresh bread would have been great. A picture also would have been great, but the Boy ate it so fast I didn't get the chance.

Buckle in for more recipes, since I have TIME OFF. For other topics, of course, the best Christmas present you could give me would be to subscribe to my Patreon, where I'll be adding more photos, essays and fiction excerpts this lovely holiday break.