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LifestyleColumnistsMarge Perry

3 Simple recipes for Southern-style dishes

Chicken breasts are pan seared and served smothered

Chicken breasts are pan seared and served smothered in slow-cooked onions in brown gravy. Photo Credit: Marge Perry


1⁄4 cup all-purpose flour

1⁄2 teaspoon salt

1⁄4 teaspoon black pepper

4 (6-ounce) boneless chicken breasts

2 tablespoons canola oil, divided

1⁄4 teaspoon paprika

1⁄4 teaspoon dried thyme

3 cups sliced onion (about 3 small or 2 medium)

2 cups low-sodium chicken broth

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce


1. Combine the flour, salt and pepper on a plate.

2. Pound the breasts lightly to an even thickness. Dredge in the flour mixture and reserve the extra flour.

3. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium high. Place the chicken in the pan and sprinkle with the paprika and thyme. Cook until the undersides are golden, about 5 minutes; turn and cook until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 160 degrees, about another 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate and drape loosely to keep warm.

4. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in the skillet; add the onions and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until soft and golden, about 10 minutes. Sprinkle with the reserved dredging flour and cook, stirring, until the flour is no longer white, about 2 minutes. Stir in the broth and Worcestershire and cook until the onions are very soft and the mixture is thickened, about 6 minutes. Add the chicken, turn once and warm through, about 2 minutes. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 329 calories, 37 g protein, 19 g carbohydrates, 2 g fiber, 11 g fat, 2 g saturated fat, 739 mg sodium



1 (16-ounce) bag trimmed, torn collard greens

4 strips bacon

4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

1⁄8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

Salt and pepper to taste


1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil; add the greens and cook 10 minutes, until tender but still brightly colored. Drain.

2. Cook the bacon in the now-empty pot; transfer to a plate lined with paper towel to drain. Pour off and discard all but 1 tablespoon of fat from the pan. Add the garlic, greens and crushed pepper to the pot and cook, tossing, until the garlic is golden and the greens warmed through. Season to taste with salt and black pepper. Makes 6 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 82 calories, 5 g protein, 5 g carbohydrates, 3 g fiber, 5 g fat, 2 g saturated fat, 145 mg sodium

TIP: Prewashed, torn collard greens do not require additional washing at home.



4 cups water

1⁄4 teaspoon salt

1 cup quick-cooking grits

1 cup (4 ounces) shredded reduced-fat Cheddar

1⁄2 cup chopped scallions


Bring the water and salt to a boil; in a slow, steady stream, stir in the grits. Reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, 5 to 6 minutes until grits are tender. Remove from heat and stir in the cheese until melted; stir in the scallions and serve. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 229 calories, 11 g protein, 32 g carbohydrates, 2 g fiber, 7 g fat, 4 g saturated fat, 340 mg sodium

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