I used to eat chicken breasts all the time, but when we made the switch to whole pastured birds, dishes featuring them became rare. This was a positive change. I've enjoyed the challenge of tackling a whole bird and it is much more budget friendly, but sometimes I just want a chicken breast.
Yes, I know you can cut them off a whole bird yourself, but I can't cut up a chicken correctly to save my life. I end up with pieces, but they certainly aren't pretty. Fortunately, we can still buy breast cuts from our pastured chicken sources so last weekend I splurged a little and let the butcher do the work.
I also bought my first bag of fresh cranberries this season, and you know how I can't stop thinking about the holidays. I thought a cranberry relish would be perfect for the poultry.
In past years, I've neglected fresh cranberries thinking I always needed to cook them into a sauce. Not so. I now love grinding them up in the food processor to eat them fresh.
My very favorite fresh relish recipe is Cranberry-Jalapeno Relish by Emeril. I'm constantly changing it up a bit, and I set out for a new version for my chicken.
Surprisingly, I have a few Scotch Bonnet peppers that have hung on in the fridge since I took out the garden. I subbed those for the jalapeños, added some onion and then some maple syrup.
I know spicy and tart is not a common combination, but with just a touch of maple syrup, this relish is so good! It works well with fish and poultry, and I also eat it alone as a salad.
Chicken with Spicy Cranberry Citrus Relish Recipe1 1/2 cups fresh cranberries
Zest and segments from 1/2 an orange
2 tbsp choppped onion
1-2 small hot peppers, seeds and ribs removed
1 tbsp maple syrup
4 3-4oz chicken breasts, seasoned and grilled or baked
Place the cranberries, orange and orange zest, onion, hot peppers and maple syrup in a small food processor. Pulse until all ingredients are finely chopped. Makes 1 3/4 cups of relish. You may find you want to add a little salt to taste, but I like mine without it.
Serve about 1/4 cup of the relish at room temperature over warm chicken breasts. Store leftovers in the fridge, but know that the heat intensifies as it sits!