Soy-Lime leaf chicken breast with glazed cauliflower
Cauliflower is an underused vegetable, which is a real shame. I love it in soups and in dishes like this that feature the vegetable's crisp texture and mild, delicious flavor. Here, cauliflower is baked with chicken and drizzled with Soy-Lime Leaf Syrup, which ties all the flavors together. Because of the vegetable's texture, you could think of this as a potato-less chicken with potatoes: You get a satisfying "starchy" accompaniment without all those potato carbs. Remember not to over-blanch the cauliflower. You want it crisp.
Kosher salt to taste
1 large cauliflower, or 2 medium, broken into small florets
4 large boneless chicken breasts, skin on
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 tablespoons grapeseed or canola oil
1 bunch of scallions, white and green parts separated, thinly sliced
1/4 cup Soy-Lime Leaf Syrup, plus additional for drizzling
1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
- Fill a large bowl with water and add ice. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add the cauliflower. Blanch it for about 2 minutes; the cauliflower should be al dente. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the cauliflower to the bowl. When cold, drain and dry well.
- Preheat the oven to 500°F. Season the chicken very lightly with salt and pepper.
- Heat a large, ovenproof sauté pan over high heat. Add the oil and swirl to coat the pan. Add the chicken, skin side down, and sauté until brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Turn and scatter the cauliflower and the white parts of the scallions around the chicken. Brush the chicken and drizzle the cauliflower with 1/4 cup of the syrup. Transfer the pan to the oven and bake until the chicken is just cooked through, 6 to 8 minutes.
- Lightly drizzle 4 serving plates with additional syrup. Place a small mound of the cauliflower on each of the plates, top with the chicken, and pour the pan juices over it. Garnish with the scallion greens and sesame seeds and serve.