Okay. I admit it. I don’t have the time and/or energy to make recipes “from scratch” every night of the week. In my ideal world, when preparing dinner, I would never rely on bottled sauces or dressings, never use seasoning packets, or use canned soups. But in my real world, with special needs kids, errands, chores, etc., sometimes I just need a hot quick entree to serve with rice and a veggie.
Oh my! This is both the most wonderful AND the most hectic time of the year. So much decorating, shopping, wrapping and baking to do. Last night I took my 17-year-old son to a Wizards game as one more birthday present. They actually won!
Now that we are in the midst of a polar blast, I spend most of my days trying to warm up again after my morning 2-mile dog walk. I despise the cold and the wind together – even through coats, gloves and hats. So, it is the time to cook dinners that will warm my family up from the inside out.
I was in Ann Arbor, Michigan (what a beautiful town) for a few days for a visit to my eye doctor, and got home last night. I had a Weight Watchers meeting this morning (a visit to Zingerman’s in Ann Arbor set me back) and then ran a variety of errands. By the time my youngest son got off the bus, I realized I had no idea what I was making for dinner, and it was too late to drive to the store to pick up anything.
I dove through our freezer and pulled out some chicken thighs. I then started combing my cookbooks on Kindle but couldn’t find an appealing recipe for which I had all the ingredients. So, it was time to come up with something on my own based on what I did have. It is quite a simple recipe, yet cooking the thighs in the sauce in a pressure cooker infuses the flavor throughout the meat, leaving it moist and seasoned throughout.
I served it with Jasmine rice – 3 SP for 1/2 cup cooked rice – and Birds Eye Steamfresh Brussel Sprouts with sea salt and cracked pepper – 2 SP for 3/4 cup. So, the whole meal was balanced, filling, delicious, and only 11 Smart Points.
i hope that you and your family like it as much as mine did.
2 pounds chicken thighs, boneless and skinless (about 8)
Salt and pepper
1 red onion chopped
1/4 cup water
1 cup cranberry sauce, whole berry (canned)
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
1/2 tablespoon rosemary
1 tablespoon cornstarch
Spray the pot liner with cooking spray. Set it on Saute More.
While the pot is heating, season the thighs with salt and pepper. Working in two batches, brown the tops of the thighs - approximately 4-5 minutes each batch. Remove to a platter.
Put the chopped onion in the pot and saute until it starts to carmelize. If there is stuck on stuff from browning the chicken, add the 1/4 cup of water and work with a spatula to scrape up the drippings and let the onions absorb the flavoring.
In a small mixing bowl, and the cranberry sauce, balsamic vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, garlic powder and rosemary and mix well.
Arrange the browned thighs in the pot on top of the onions. Pour the sauce mixture on top of thighs trying to cover all.
Cook on high pressure for 15 minutes. Use quick pressure release.
Remove the chicken thighs to a platter. To thicken the sauce you can either saute while stirring until it reduces by half, or you can mix 1 tablespoon of cornstarch in 2 tablespoons of water and add the slurry to the sauce. Saute until it thickens (2-3 minutes).