I’m looking for new recipes to try this year and I’m going back to some of my favorite cookbooks to find them. Last week, I pulled “Southern Sideboards” from the Junior League of Jackson off the shelf and began looking through the entrees.

In the poultry section, I found an interesting recipe for Almond Chicken with Rice. It’s one of those recipes that I can see being served at dinner parties in the 1970s alongside a fruit salad of some sort.

I made a few changes. The original called for skinning and deboning chicken breasts, so I just bought skinless boneless breasts. I substituted butter for margarine and used less of it. I used sherry instead of cooking sherry because that’s what I had.

Most importantly, the recipe said to cook the dish for 1 hour and 15 minutes. I cooked it for an hour and checked it and it was way overdone ... still edible, but a bit dry. That’s why I suggest checking it after 45 minutes.

Long live the dinner party!

ALMOND CHICKEN WITH RICE

6 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves

Salt, pepper and paprika

1/2 cup slivered almonds

1/2 stick butter

1/2 cup chopped onion

1 small can sliced mushrooms, drained

Juice of 1 lemon

1/4 cup sherry or cooking sherry

1 cup raw rice, cooked

Parsley

Place chicken in a baking dish and sprinkle with salt, pepper and paprika. Brown almonds in butter. Remove almonds from pan and in the same skillet sauté onion and mushrooms. Add lemon juice, sherry and almonds, stirring well.

Spoon mixture over chicken breasts. Cover with foil and bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes to 1 hour (internal temp should be 165 degrees). Spoon rice onto a serving platter and place chicken on top. Garnish with parsley. Serves 6.

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