Chinese five-spice substitute and spinach salad round II.

Dinner Friday night was sooooo good that I knew I would have to have that spinach salad again. But last night I didn’t want anything else with it. What about the meat? For the sake of my partner I made a dry-rub with a knock-off Chinese five spice recipe I conjured because, even though I know I’ve had one or two bottles around, I must have used it all because there is none in my cupboard. None. Zilch. The recipes I found for the five-spice blend required roasting fennel seeds and grinding them together with star anise, which I have, believe it or not, thanks to that special trip to Uwajimaya a couple of weeks ago. But I just didn’t feel like grinding it.

Here’s what I came up with:

1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp each ginger, white pepper and red pepper flakes
1/8 tsp. cloves
1/2-3/4 tsp. kosher salt
1 1/2 tsp. sugar

Rub on dry chicken, drizzle with olive oil if you wish and bake for 25ish minutes on 350-375 until tender & moist but no longer pink in the center. I do the press test so I don’t have to cut into the breast and lose the juices. After resting five minutes, slice the chicken breast at an angle and divide between two plates.

The chicken was excellent with my giant spinach salad. Again topped with fruit, feta and toasted pine nuts, and dressed with raspberry vinaigrette, it was an entrée salad worth shouting about.

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