Healthy and Cheap: Pomegranate Chicken Thighs with Mint and Walnuts
Boneless skinless chicken thighs usually are available on special at grocery stores during the weeks when boneless skinless breasts aren't on sale. I try to pick up an extra package of the thighs, but then I have to come up with different ways to cook them so that no one notices that, yes, we are having chicken AGAIN! Pomegranate Chicken Thighs with Mint and Walnuts is one of the better options. It looks a bit muddy, but it tastes really good and is full of nutritious ingredients like pomegranate juice, which is loaded with nutrients and antioxidants and may help reduce your risk for chronic disease and inflammation. Walnuts contain healthy fats, protein, and fiber and may have a role to play in reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease, stroke, and heart attacks. Mint is high in antioxidants and multiple other health benefits, many related to digestion. Beyond all that, the dish is easy to make, quick, and a little different without being over-the-top weird. In fact, you may not be able to tell just what's in it. The pomegranate juice provides a subtle sweet-tart taste, but it isn't pronounced. The recipe makes plenty of sauce, so consider serving the thighs atop some basmati rice, pita bread, naan, or even noodles.
Pomegranate Chicken Thighs with Mint and Walnuts -- Serves 4+
1 tablespoon of canola oil
6 large boneless skinless chicken thighs
1/2 cup of flour
1 medium onion, chopped
1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon of lemon pepper
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon
2 cups of pomegranate juice
1/2 cup of walnut halves and pieces
2-3 tablespoons of torn or chopped mint (2-3 sprigs)
Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium high heat and add the oil. Put the chicken thighs and flour in a large plastic bag, seal the bag, and shake the bag until the thighs are coated with flour. When the pan and oil are hot, put the thighs in the pan and brown them for about 5 minutes on each side. Add the onion and saute it for a few minutes. Sprinkle on the garlic powder, lemon pepper, salt, and cinnamon and stir them in. Stir in the flour remaining in the plastic bag (it may clump a bit, but it will cook into the sauce later). Stir or whisk in the pomegranate juice and bring the contents of the skillet to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low, partially cover the pan, and let the mixture cook until the sauce is reduced by 1/3-1/2 and the chicken is cooked through--10-15 minutes. Sprinkle on the walnuts and the mint and serve the chicken thighs atop rice, pita bread, naan, or noodles.