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Chicken Breast with Homemade Croutons and Peas

Chicken Recipe

Nearly 20 years ago my father came home from a routine check-up at the doctor’s office. He walked inside the house, said, “Dobar Den”, or “Good Day”, and walked straight to the refrigerator. He opened up the door and began to empty it out. My sister and I thought something was definitely wrong because our dad never cleans!  Few moments later he walked out of the house with a garbage bag that contained most of our food. He then moved onto the pantry, and lastly he cleaned out the cupboard with all the snacks.

Later on that night we found out what had happened:

My father’s doctor warned him that if he did not stop eating the food that he was eating, he would die before the age of 50. At that time my dad was only 36.

His blood pressure and his sugar levels were inside the danger zone. His eating habits were out of control; a bucket of ice cream would be gone in three days, he would eat half pound of feta cheese with each meal, and his favorite meal was any type of grilled meat with a side of Taratur. And lets not get into what he ate in-between meals.

But, within days our kitchen looked like the kitchens at Weight Watchers; lots of chicken, lean meat, vegetables and fruits galore, and plenty of brown rice and whole wheat bread.

My dad is on the same diet to this day, and according to his doctor, his body’s age is 42 even if he really is 56.

The preparation of this meal reminds me of those days; my mom trying to hang on to the flavor without adding in the extra fixins.

Chicken Breast with Homemade Croutons and Peas
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
40 mins
Total Time
50 mins
 
Chicken Breast with Homemade Croutons and Peas
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chicken breasts recipe, peas
Servings: 4
Ingredients
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 4 chicken breasts
  • 3 cups frozen peas
  • 1 cup prepared mushroom gravy
  • 1/4 cup Light Italian Dressing
  • 2 to 3 cups whole grain homemade croutons
Whole Grain Homemade Croutons
  • 8 slices of whole grain bread cut up in cubes
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 clove of garlic minced
  • 1 tablespoon of oregano
  • salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. In a large saute pan, pour in the olive oil and stir in the garlic.
  3. Add bread cubes, and toss to coat.
  4. Season with oregano, salt and pepper, toss and spread on a baking sheet.
  5. Bake for 15 minutes, or until crisp and dry. Set aside.
  6. For the Chicken:
  7. Heat olive oil in skillet on medium heat.
  8. Add in the chicken breasts and cook for about 3 min on each side or until brown.
  9. Stir in peas, mushroom gravy, and dressing, then bring to a boil.
  10. Spoon the croutons on top of and around the chicken in the skillet.
  11. Cover and simmer on medium-low heat for approximately 15 minutes.
  12. Serve warm.

 

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33 Responses
  1. This looks delicious 🙂 Sometimes I think eating healthy is something we do best when forced. My mom went on a similar refrigerator clean-out when she reached the age her father passed away at. Life is too short for cookies and cakes all the time 🙂

  2. Hurray for your father and his determination. Your chicken dish proves that healthy eating can be delicious. A little knowledge on how to add flavors in a healthy, sustainable humane way could reinvent how we eat. (Add yay to the homemade croutons).

  3. Great recipe and story. I’m a sweet a holic and love my treats, but I do eat healthy 80% of the time. Delicious and healthy can live together on the same plate. Glad your Dad made that decision.

  4. I feel that many people need to do what your dad did. We live in a country where there are so many sugary, fatty processed foods. What we need to do is create an environment where we are surrounded by good healthy foods, so that the temptation isn’t there.

    This looks like a such a satisfying and flavorful meal. The mushroom gravy must make all the difference in flavor.

  5. Great post Kate..I wish more people had the resolve your dad did. We see all the time where they decide to get on a healthy eating plan and within about 4 weeks they go back to their old habits. So sad.

  6. I feel for your dad, it comes as a shock to hear that sort of thing. In my case, I was 37 (still am for a few more days!) and I was not eating much junk and was relatively fit, but my sugar levels were still high (I don’t have blood pressure issues at all). Such is life! This is a great healthy meal to keep your dad and the rest of your family looking and feeling young!

  7. hi Kate

    don’t we all wish we had the resolve your father had, to be able to changer your life in one day without looking back is almost impossible, and he did it!
    Thanks for sharing this wonderful dish, it shows you can eat healthy and still eat good food
    Cheers
    Dennis

  8. Good for your dad! And he became such a great role model for the rest of the family. Too many people today choose to continue eating their bad diets and then try to fix the problems caused by their diets with pharmaceutical drugs.
    Your chicken looks great! 🙂

  9. Gosh, Kate. It just goes to show how a health fright like that can change everything. Good on your Dad how he changed to a healthy lifestyle just like that! Love the homemade croutons, nice touch.

  10. I’m so very proud of your dad! I know it doesn;t seem like it from my blog but we are very healthy eaters in our family – I just like blogging about the sweet stuff I guess. But my husband and I have started eating better in the past 5 years and are now living a very active lifestyle. We feel better and are enjoying time with our little kiddos. It certainly does take some creativity to get flavor in without all of the extra fat, etc. Great recipe! And great post! 🙂 – Katrina

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Katerina

I'm a cookie-maker, baker-faker & picture-taker! For me, eating is a moment to share, an enjoyment, a passion. I hope you enjoy my recipes!

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