I had a macadamia crusted halibut fillet at The Shore Club in Toronto recently and when I got home to England it inspired me to make this Baked Chicken with Macadamia Nut Crust. Moist, delicious chicken encased in a tasty coating of breadcrumbs and macadamia nuts – this is a great alternative to traditional fried chicken as it’s much lower in fat and calories. Having said that, please don’t think for one minute this is a low-calorie option. It’s just slightly healthier.
There are two possible marinades that you can use, both of which are equally delicious. For a bit of zing, try the orange juice and soy sauce marinade. For a mild, tender richness use the buttermilk marinade instead. Either way try to marinate the chicken for at least a couple of hours in the fridge or overnight if possible to let the moisture and flavours of the marinade really permeate the chicken.
It’s important to chop the macadamia nuts really finely in order to give a crunchy yet tender crust. Be careful not to overcook the chicken as you don’t want to dry it out. Delicious served with potatoes or rice, leftovers of my Baked Chicken with a Macadamia Nut Crust also tastes great cold in sandwiches the next day.
- 4 skinless chicken breasts
- the juice of 2 oranges and 2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce OR 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 cup bread crumbs
- ½ cup macadamia nuts, very finely chopped
- salt and pepper
- 3 tablespoons mild vegetable oil (I use olive)
- Either mix together the orange juice and soy sauce and place it in a zip lock bag or other sealable container along with the chicken OR put the buttermilk in a zip lock bag or other sealable container along with the chicken.
- Marinate in the fridge for at least an hour or overnight if possible.
- Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
- Mix together the bread crumbs, finely chopped macadamia nuts, salt and pepper in a large bowl or on a large plate.
- Pour the three tablespoons of oil on an oven safe baking tray.
- Heat the tray in the oven for 5 minutes.
- Meanwhile, remove the chicken breasts from the marinade. Discard any remaining marinade.
- One chicken breast at a time, press the meat into the bread crumbs firmly on both sides.
- Carefully remove the baking tray from the oven and place on a heat proof surface.
- After placing the chicken breasts on the baking sheet plump side up, carefully press some of the remaining crumbs into the top of the chicken breasts.
- Bake the chicken breasts, without turning, for 30 to 40 minutes until they reach an internal temperature of 165°F and no pink remains inside.
- Serve with potatoes or rice and a green vegetable.