A long day, poor planning, laziness....whatever the case may be, a rub could be the answer you're needing. When you don't have time to plan a meal or marinate your meat....rub it in instead. There are so many varieties out there. I'm sure you have your favorite or will find one in no time.
One of the rubs we enjoy was inspired by a recipe I got out of the Everyday Food magazine, the July / August issue back in 2004. I only added two additional ingredients....garlic powder and onion powder. I don't understand how garlic was left out of this recipe to begin with. We're talking about GARLIC here people! Most everything (and I say most because I haven't wrapped my head around garlic as a dessert ingredient yet) is better with garlic. What was Martha thinking? As I look at several other rub recipes in the little magazine...none of them contain garlic.
I don't get it.
Anyways...this recipe is simple. Doesn't make a huge amount, so you don't have to worry about having to cook with it everyday for the next several months before the spices deteriorate. I think you can get about 2 - 4 uses out of, depending on how much you use. Me? I like to use a lot of it. And you probably have all of the ingredients in your spice rack. Can't get much better then that, can it? Of course if you want to stock up, double or triple the recipe.
makes about 11 teaspoons
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon chili powder
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon coarse salt
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
Combine all the ingredients and mix well. Store in an airtight container for up to six months.
Feel free to adjust the spices to suit your taste. I might even add a bit more garlic next time.
Anyway....I drizzle a tiny bit of olive oil on my chicken breast. Then I massage the rub in before cooking (you can also rub it in hours before hand).
I've found that if I don't add a bit of oil before hand (to chicken breast....thighs and beef have been no problem)....the rub tends to stay on the dry side during cooking. Just for a starting point....Martha says to use about 1 teaspoon of rub for every 3/4 lb of meat.
I like that nice caramelization that happens. Especially with the brown sugar that's in this recipe. I had butterflied these breasts before adding the rub...and they cooked wonderfully, quickly, evenly and were so flavorful! Served with a quick side of rice (made in a rice cooker of course while I was messing with the chicken) and a few veggies and / or salad, and you have a satisfying dinner that you put together in no time. For us working moms and moms of kids in school.....you gotta love a meal like this.