“You haven’t planned a dinner in a while,” my husband said recently as I stirred a bolognese sauce on the stove.
Though I’d planned on making bolognese for dinner that day, I recognized the truth in the statement. Even though I’ve never been big on meal planning, I have always been a plan-ahead girl when it comes to dinner — ready with an answer for the ubiquitous question: “What’s for dinner?”
Until I wasn’t.
Suddenly, I never seemed to know what we’d be eating. And it kind of drove me a little batty since every evening I ended up in a mad dash to figure it out at the last minute. Not fun.
Oddly enough, Shawn commented it on that just as I re-found my ability to plan ahead for meals. (I say that with great relief — this was a part of me that I needed to reclaim.)
Moreover, I’ve been making some creative dinners that the kids are really into. Like Cilantro Lime Chicken and Rice with Avocado and Tomatoes. The kids loved this — and so did my cousins, who were the happy recipients of a dinner delivery recently.
Cilantro and lime are one of those flavor combinations that just works. The combination of the citrus, the fresh cilantro and a little garlic makes an amazing marinade for the chicken here. Then the rice is tossed with lime zest (flavor without the acid!) and more cilantro.
Once the chicken is broiled to juicy perfection, it’s all served with creamy avocado slices and sweet tomatoes.
Perfect. Easy. Ready.
You just have to try this. Trust me.
- 1 lime, zested and juiced (divided)
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2/3 cup minced fresh cilantro, divided
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- 1 1/2 lb chicken, 4 breast halves
- 1 cup rice, prepared
- 1 avocado, pitted, peeled and sliced
- 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
- In a large bowl, whisk together the lime juice, olive oil, 1/3 cup cilantro, salt, pepper and garlic. Add the chicken, cover and chill for about 1 hour to marinate.
- Once the chicken is all marinated, place on a broiling rack set over a pan. Broil on high for 8 minutes, then flip and broil for an additional 8-10 minutes, until cooked through. Let sit for 10 minutes.
- While the chicken is resting, stir together the rice, lime zest and remaining 1/3 cup of cilantro. Season well with salt and pepper.
- Divide the rice evenly among four plates. Place one chicken breast on each plate with 1/4 of the avocado slices and 1/4 of the tomatoes.
Sarah Walker Caron is a cookbook author, freelance writer and founder of Sarah’s Cucina Bella. She is the author of four cookbooks including The Super Easy 5-Ingredient Cookbook and One-Pot Pasta, both from Rockridge Press. A single mother to a tween and a teen, Sarah loves nightly family dinners, juicy tomatoes plucked fresh from the vine and lazy days on the beach. She also adores reading and traveling.