This simple chicken recipe is one of our favourites. It’s dead simple to prepare, uses ingredients I almost always have in the fridge and literally tastes like spring. It’s usually one of the first meals prepared on the barbeque after the snow is gone, but this spring everything is a little slow, including the first appearance of this dish.
All you need to make Spring Chicken: 2 or 3 lemons, a few green onions, lemon juice, olive oil, kosher salt, black pepper. Not pictured: boneless, skinless chicken breasts. I was focused completely on the lemon, not so much on the chicken.
Start by zesting the lemons. This is such a satisfying kitchen task. It’s like a game to get all the zest off the lemon.
This is the zest from my three medium sized lemons. At this point my whole house was smelling lemon fresh – a definite side benefit to preparing this meal!
After zesting, juice your naked lemons.
I should have taken a photo of the zest and juice mixture after I squeezed all I could out of the lemons. It’s usually not enough juice to dredge the chicken in so I supplement by adding bottled lemon juice (usually 2-3 tablespoons worth). If you have particularly juicy lemons, you could easily leave this out.
After juicing and zesting, add in your chopped green onions, a tablespoon of olive oil, about 2 teaspoons of kosher salt, and a few grinds of the pepper mill. At the last minute I remembered adding parsley to the marinade in the past so I went ahead and added that as well. Just a couple of pinches of the freeze dried stuff. I’ve used fresh before and it’s extra delicious.
Add your chicken breasts, cover and marinate for at least 20 minutes. Because of the highly acidic marinade, you won’t want to marinate much longer than 40 minutes or the meat will start to break down.
This photo of the breasts on the grill is the closest thing I have to a finished dish shot. I was so excited to eat this meal that I completely forgot to take a shot of the final plate.
I served my Spring Chicken with these roasted baby potatoes (“Terrific Trio” from the local Little Potato Company) and a green salad. Just go ahead and picture that all on a plate together, looking all lovely and springy.
Tonight was the first evening we’ve eaten on the patio. This was the perfect meal to enjoy outside with a cold beer.
1 chicken breast for each diner
2-3 lemons, zested and juiced
2-3 green onions, chopped
2-3 T lemon juice (bottled)
1 T olive oil
2 t kosher salt
A couple pinches of parsley
Black pepper to taste
Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Marinate chicken breasts for 20-40 minutes. Grill. Serve with your favourite spring sides.