Parents see family dinner in the same light as washboard abs — something we hope for but rarely achieve.
So imagine our relief when Jenny Rosenstrach’s new memoir-slash-cookbook, Dinner: a Love Story, gave us an unexpected free pass. She doesn’t recommend attempting a sit-down meal with your kids until your youngest is at least 3.
Before you reach for the takeout menus, rest assured the book has a whole section dedicated to dishes for weary new (and newish) parents to enjoy together. After the babies have gone to bed.
This chicken is perfect for those kinds of meals, because it comes together really quickly and doesn’t require any serious brainpower (ideal for the sleep deprived and downright exhausted). If you’re both home in time, try a tag team: You make the sauce, while he does bath time; he takes over for baking and broiling, while you read stories. Dinner will be ready and waiting as soon as the kids are asleep.
Apricot-Mustard Baked Chicken
6-8 skin-on chicken pieces (thighs or drumsticks), rinsed and patted dry
Salt and pepper
¾ c. apricot jam
1 tbsp. grainy mustard
¼ c. water
Leaves from 2 sprigs fresh thyme
1. Preheat oven to 400°.
2. Line a rimmed cookie sheet or baking dish with parchment paper. Place chicken on sheet, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and bake for 10 minutes.
3. While chicken bakes, in a small saucepan over low heat, whisk together jam, mustard, water, thyme, and a little salt and pepper for about 3 minutes. It should be slightly syrupy.
4. Pull chicken out of the oven and pour sauce on top. Continue baking for another 15 minutes. For the last 3 minutes, place chicken under broiler on top rack, so it gets golden and crispy looking.
Dinner: a Love Story is available for preorder at amazon.com, $18.
Photo: Jennifer Causey / Courtesy of Ecco