When my mom passed away I “inherited” a recipe binder that I had given her. In her meticulous way, she had organized all the recipes into categories, titling each page in her familiar handwriting. Since then, I’ve used many of the recipes that she had collected. But my favorite is a recipe for grilled Dijon chicken breasts. It’s written in her handwriting on a sheet of stenographer paper, and I don’t know where the recipe originally came from. Though I keep it in a plastic sleeve, it’s now smudged and a little torn. I’ve adapted the recipe so it’s baked not grilled, but I always think of mother when I make it. —Monita
Boneless, skinless chicken breasts
lemon juice (from 2 lemons)
dried herbs (Italian seasoning, Herbs de Provence, rosemary or thyme )
Mix together mustard, vinegar, lemon juice and herbs. Then drizzle in the oil until combined.
Pour some of the mixture on the bottom of a 9x13” (or larger) baking dish and then lay down the chicken. Pour over the rest of the mixture over the chicken. Use your hands to make sure each piece is coated.
Cover with foil and bake in oven for about 40 minutes or until the chicken is firm to touch and reaches 165° on a thermometer.
Former recipe tester for Martha Stewart Living Magazine and Martha Stewart Omnimedia books, Monita began testing recipes for Food52 in 2012 as well as responding to Hotline questions. She also tests recipes for media companies, like The Food Network, assists food stylists, does food writing, including her own blog, www.nyculinaryfinds.com A culinary professional for a decade, Monita began her professional life in the public relations field. Monita is committed to preventing hunger and volunteers with Met Council, an organization that helps New Yorkers fight poverty. One of her favorite projects with them is cooking Thanksgiving dinner for 60 residents at their low income housing.