Sunday, January 25, 2015

My Rendition of Outback's "Alice Springs Chicken"

Central Oregon is not really fond of big chain restaurants.
This is the land of locally owned hole in the walls
with locally brewed beers on tap.
This may be the reason, after 15 years in business
Bend's Outback Steakhouse closed up shop. 
Don't get me wrong, I am all for "keeping it local"
yet it's been over a year and I'm still mourning the loss.

I loved Outback and had some wonderful memories there.
Before all the trendy new places opened up, 
Outback was one of the best places in town
 to get an "upscale-ish" meal. 
My grandparents (RIP Grandpa Gene) 
took me there the night before my graduation. 
My husband took me there when we first started dating.
But now the closest Outback 
is all the way on the other side of the mountain, 
and may as well be in the actual "Outback"
So I improvise, homemade is better, right?

Truth be told, 
I actually developed this rendition of Outback's 
"Alice Springs Chicken"  years ago, 
partly because after our second baby was born, 
my husband and I 
had become total home-bodies,
and partly because we couldn't 
really afford to eat out much anyway.
That's when I first started to realize 
Homemade is definitely better for the family budget.

If you've never tried "Alice Springs Chicken" I highly recommend it,
either at home or if you're lucky enough 
to have an Outback in your area, 
then by all means, go there right now 
and enjoy a bloomin' onion in my honor, 
but be sure to save room for this tasty succulent chicken dinner! 

Here's how you can make this right at home.

You'll need: 

3 Boneless skinless chicken breasts
honey mustard (recipe follows)
6 slices of thick cut Bacon
1 pint Baby Bella Mushrooms
1 cup Sharp Cheddar Cheese (grated)

Honey Mustard Recipe

*You can use store bought honey mustard in a pinch.
(If so, I suggest the kind they sell individually at the deli counter, those are THE best!)
Or you can make your own by mixing up these ingredients:
3/4 cup dijon mustard, 3/4 cup honey, 2 tablespoon mayonnaise, 2 tablespoon lemon juice, 1 teaspoon brown sugar. 


Pour half the marinade over the chicken.
Let it marinate for 2-4 hours.
*Reserve the other half of the marinade.
After it's marinated, 
Preheat oven to 375.
Cook up your bacon in a skillet.
*Set bacon aside on paper towel.
*Proceed with caution*
Honey mustard+hot bacon grease = lots of popping. 
Use a splatter screen!
Sear chicken in same skillet (in bacon fat) 
for approx 4 minutes per side. 
Transfer chicken to baking dish 
& brush with half of the reserved honey mustard 
*Save the other half of honey mustard for serving. 
Meanwhile saute mushrooms in skillet.
Top chicken with bacon & mushrooms. 
Bake for approx. 10 minutes 
until Chicken is cooked through. 
Top with cheese and broil on low for 1-2 minutes 
until cheese is melted. 
Serve with honey mustard dipping sauce 
and a great side dish 
like a loaded baked potato 
or a side salad, 
if you're a wuss. (just kidding!) 

Like I said, I have been making this recipe for years.
So I hope I didn't leave anything out. 
If you have any questions, 
or just want to rant about how awesome this recipe is, 
or if you're from Outback Steakhouse
and want to offer me a job managing a restaurant in La Pine, OR.
feel free to post a comment below. 

Disclaimer: This recipe is an interpretation and my personal rendition of a restaurant dish.