Notes: Pounding the chicken helps the chicken to cook evenly. Cooking the chicken may cause a bit of smoke from the blackened seasoning so make sure to turn on the exhaust. Serve this meal with a green salad on the side.
About the author: Yvonne Ruperti is a food writer, recipe developer, former bakery owner, and author of The Complete Idiot's Guide To Easy Artisan Bread. You can also watch her culinary stylings on the America's Test Kitchen television show. She presently lives in Singapore as a freelance writer for Time Out Singapore. Check out her blog: shophousecook.com. Follow Yvonne on Twitter.
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- Yield:serves 4
- Active time: 1 hour
- Total time:3 hours
- For the Chicken:
- 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, about 6 ounces each
- 4 cups water
- Kosher salt
- For the Rub:
- 2 tablespoons paprika
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 2 teaspoons ground thyme
- 2 teaspoons onion powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon cayenne powder
- 1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- White pepper
- For the Potatoes:
- 2 pounds yukon gold potatoes, unpeeled, washed, cut into 2-inch pieces
- 8 tablespoons (4 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1 to 1 1/2 cups whole milk, warmed
- 4 teaspoons vegetable oil
Place chicken in a container with 4 cups water and 3 tablespoons salt. Swish salt to dissolve. Let the chicken brine in refrigerator 2 to 3 hours. In medium bowl, stir together paprika, oregano, thyme, onion powder, garlic powder, cayenne powder, black pepper, 1 teaspoon white pepper, and half teaspoon salt.
Rinse chicken and then pat dry with paper towels. Place chicken between 2 pieces of plastic wrap. Pound gently with meat pounder to equalize thickness of chicken (about 1/2-inch thick). Keep refrigerated while you prepare potatoes.
In large saucepan, bring 3 quarts water to boil. Add potatoes and 1 tablespoon salt. Simmer until potatoes are tender, about 20 minutes. Drain potatoes and return to pot. Using potato masher, mash with butter until creamy but still chunky, then stir in 3/4 cup milk. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Cover and keep warm while you cook chicken.
Pat chicken dry with paper towels and generously rub both sides with spice rub. Heat 2 teaspoons vegetable oil in 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add chicken and cook until exterior is very dark and an instant read thermometer inserted into the thickest part registers 150 to 155°F, about 5 minutes for each side, adding more oil for the second side. Transfer to cutting board and let rest for 5 minutes.
Check consistency of potatoes and add more milk to loosen if desired. Slice chicken and serve over potatoes.