When Susan and I were in New Orleans, she bought a cookbook devoted to the use of pecans. Baked Pecan Chicken was the one recipe that really caught her eye. Who could resist succulent pieces of chicken coated in pecans?
In keeping with the Mardi Gras theme, I thought we would make the Baked Pecan Chicken and pair it with Mardi Gras Rice. All I can say is that it was an outstanding meal!
Ingredients for Baked Pecan Chicken:
I used the following ingredients for the baked pecan chicken: A 4-pound whole chicken, roasted pecans, all-purpose flour, paprika, salt, Parmesan cheese, egg, buttermilk (not pictured), and unsalted butter.
The actual recipe called for pecan meal, which I didn’t have. I knew that if I wasn’t careful in processing the roasted pecans to a meal consistency, I would end up with pecan butter. Therefore, I processed the pecans in my food processor for about 10 seconds. Then, I added the flour, paprika, salt and Parmesan cheese to the food processor. I continued processing for another 20 seconds, at which time everything was perfectly blended.
I removed the backbone and the wings (to be used later in making chicken broth) when I started cutting up the chicken. Then, I cut the remaining chicken into six pieces – 2 breasts, two thighs and two legs. Next, I mixed together the buttermilk and egg in one dish. I added the flour/pecan mixture in another dish. Finally, I dipped the chicken in the buttermilk/egg mixture, and coated it with the pecan/flour mixture.
I placed each coated piece of chicken into a 9 x 13-inch Pyrex dish with melted butter.
After turning each piece of chicken to ensure that it was coated with butter, I placed the Baked Pecan Chicken into a 350°F oven for an hour.
Making the Mardi Gras Rice:
While the chicken was cooking, I set my sights on the Mardi Gras Rice. I used the following ingredients: Long grain rice, unsalted butter, chopped red onion, chopped yellow bell pepper, frozen green peas and chicken broth.
First, I rinsed the rice in a wire strainer until the water ran clear. The purpose of doing this was to remove any excess starch from the rice. Then, I melted the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat, and sautéed the onion and yellow bell pepper for about 5 minutes. I added the rice to the saucepan, and continued cooking the mixture over medium heat for several minutes until the rice became opaque.
Next, I added the chicken broth, stirred the mixture to ensure that everything was well combined. I placed a paper towel on top of the pan and covered with a lid. About 5 minutes before the rice was ready, I added the green peas. The Mardi Gras Rice was perfectly done after another five minutes!
Once the chicken was done, I removed it from the oven. I placed the chicken pieces on a plate lined with paper towels to allow them to drain.
This recipe is reposted from February 6, 2016. I served the Baked Pecan Chicken with not only the Mardi Gras Rice, but also steamed fresh green beans. Yum!
Baked Pecan Chicken with Mardi Gras Rice
Baked Pecan Chicken
- 4 ounces unsalted butter melted
- ¾ cup buttermilk
- 1 egg beaten
- ¾ cup roasted pecans finely ground
- ¾ cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup Parmesan cheese, grated
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 2 teaspoons Kosher Salt
- 4 pound broiler-fryer chicken, cut up, backbone and wings discarded
Mardi Gras Rice
- 1 ½ cups long grain rice rinsed well
- 1 Tablespoon unsalted butter
- ¼ cup finely chopped red onion
- ¼ cup diced yellow bell pepper
- 3 cups low sodium chicken broth
- ¼ cup frozen green peas
- Baked Pecan Chicken: Preheat oven to 350° F. Pour melted butter in 9 x 13-inch Pyrex dish. Set aside.
- Combine buttermilk and egg in a shallow dish; whisk to combine.
- Process roasted pecans in food processor for 10 seconds. Add flour, Parmesan cheese, paprika and salt. Process for another 20 seconds or until all ingredients are well combined. Transfer to a shallow dish.
- Dip the chicken pieces first in the buttermilk/egg mixture and then in the pecan/flour mixture, coating evenly. Place chicken in the prepared baking dish, turning to coat evenly with butter. Arrange chicken pieces in baking dish, skin side up.
- Bake until the chicken is nicely browned and the juices run clear, about 1 hour. Yield: 4 servings.
- Mardi Gras Rice: Melt butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and yellow bell pepper; sauté until tender, about 5 minutes. Add rice; stir well to combine. Cook over medium heat for several minutes until the rice grains become opaque. Add chicken broth. Cover pan with paper towel and lid. Reduce heat to medium low and simmer for 15 minutes. Add frozen green peas; stir to combine. Cover with paper towel and lid and cook for another 5 minutes, or until rice is done. Yield: 4 to 6 servings.