“Since hunger is the most primitive and permanent of human wants, men always want to eat, but since their wish not to be a mere animal is also profound, they have always attended with special care to the manners which conceal the fact that at the table we are animals feeding.” - John Erskine

28 October 2011

mediterranean chicken

It was one of those days again.  I know I don’t need to go into detail.  We’ve all had ‘em and we’re all going to have ‘em again.  Run run run like crazy and then wonder what you could possibly make for dinner because you didn’t prepare when you had time.  I was wracking my brain, flipping through recipe books (wasting more time) when I remembered I had one of these babies in my cabinet.  Campbell’s to the rescue this time.  And it was actually culturally stimulating (not to mention really yummy.) 

Mediterranean Chicken
serves 6
source: Campbell’s Fabulous One-Dish Recipes
1½ cups bulgur wheat or regular long-grain rice, uncooked
1 can (about 16 ounces) stewed tomatoes, cut up
1 can (10½ ounces) condensed chicken broth
½ soup can water
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
¼ cup sliced pitted ripe olives
1 tablespoon lemon juice
½ teaspoon pepper
6 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves (about 1½ pounds)
½ teaspoon garlic salt

In a 3-quart oblong baking dish, combine bulgur wheat, tomatoes, broth, water, parsley, olives, lemon juice and pepper. 

Arrange chicken on bulgur mixture; press each chicken breast into bulgur mixture, covering halfway.  Sprinkle garlic salt and paprika over chicken.  Cover with foil. 

Bake at 375° for 30 minutes.  Uncover; bake 10 minutes more or until chicken is no longer pink.  Garnish with additional parsley and olives, if desired.

I decided I better double the recipe, but how was I going to do that when the biggest baking dish I have is a 9x13 incher?  It just so happened that my clean electric fry pan was sitting on the counter waiting to be put away (it looks something like this, but bigger ~ a great huge mondo thing) and I figured what the hay?  Popped all the stuff in there, stuck the lid on and cranked it to 375°.  It worked great!   

I’ve never tried bulgur wheat before, have you?, but it just so happened that I had some in the house that I apparently bought for another recipe and forgot about.  Very easy, and if you’re like my friend Renée (hi Renée!) who’s afraid of brown rice, this is a great alternative.  It cooked up really easily and was soft and had a similar flavor to brown rice.  I’m going to have to use bulgur more often!  Might even try some for breakfast one of these days.  And although I did use the bulgur, I also made some modifications.  (Of course.)  I didn’t have any stewed tomatoes (nor would I have wanted to cut them up if I’d had them ~ probably wouldnt have needed to anyway) so I used diced (just 1 can since Middlest doesn’t like tomatoes much).  No cutting necessary.  I didn’t have any parsley, so I added a little dry basil.  Love basil and it goes well with tomatoes and chicken.  Even though my husband doesn’t like olives much, I did pop open a can and sliced them with my handy dandy egg slicer.  (Ever tried that trick?  Works amazingly on olives.  Easy peasy olive squeezy, hehe.  But be careful with the cheapy ones, olives can bend the wires.)  I didn’t feel like climbing on a stool and trolling through my spice cabinet either, so the paprika may have felt a little left out.  It still tasted wonderful, and much to my surprise, everyone ate it and loved it.  Seems I’m turning my family into adventurous eaters after all.


  1. This looks & sounds really good. I love that you're not afraid to substitute. I'm thinking I might have to try this one & soon. No bulgar though; just brown rice in my cupboard!:)

  2. I substitute all the time ~ I'm horrible that way, which is why I always give the original recipe. This blog is actually good for me since half the time when my family loves a recipe I can't remember how I changed it and can never make it the same way again!

  3. That's too funny but I love the way you've solved the problem. Hmmm, maybe I need to dust off my cooking blog & do the same thing. Food for thought!