Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Slow Cooked Peanutty Chicken

After getting home from a monster cook date (six different entrees, six servings of each, plus side dishes), I was short on both cooking mojo and time before I had to pick up the kids at school. What I did have was a package of chicken breasts, a hankering for peanut butter, and my trusty slow cooker.

If you've ever read this blog before, you'll know that my slow cooker is actually a fast cooker. Aside from the fact that it cooks everything in half the time it should, I love the slow cooker because it's pretty hands off, which is great when you have to drive 30 minutes each way to get your kids, or are sick of standing at the stove all day and it's not even dinner time yet. Guilty on both counts.

Because of my experience with this "slow" cooker, I knew for a fact that my boneless breasts would be cooked within 2 1/2 hours. Even 5 minutes longer turns them into dry, dusty throat-cloggers. Your crock pot/slow cooker may be different; all I can suggest is that you use it (a lot) until you figure out exactly what timing works for you.

This recipe can be doubled or tripled, and will fill the crockpot better if it is. If you don't have/can't find ginger and garlic in the tubes, substitute about 1 T. of fresh ginger and garlic for each "squeeze" I call for.

Slow Cooked Peanutty Chicken
Serves 3 - 4

nonstick cooking spray
1/3 cup peanut butter
3 T. low-sodium tamari (soy) sauce
1 squeeze of fresh ginger from the tube
1 squeeze of garlic from the tube
1 squeeze of Sriracha or other hot sauce (or crushed red pepper flakes)
about 1/4 cup of low-sodium chicken broth
1 package boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 1 1/2 lbs.)
1 lime, cut into 4 wedges

Spray the crockpot with nonstick spray. Turn to LOW.

Combine the peanut butter, soy sauce, ginger, garlic, hot sauce and broth in the crockpot and whisk to combine. Place the chicken breasts in the pot and use a spatula to coat them with the sauce. Cover and cook for 2 1/2 hours (or longer), or until chicken is cooked through. You will definitely have to stir this once or twice while cooking to make sure the sauce doesn't burn on the bottom of the crock pot, if yours is as hot as mine. :)

Serve with wedge of lime, a grain (I went with quinoa) and vegetable (I went with baby spinach, julienned and stirred into the quinoa) for a very delicious dinner.

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