Butter Chicken

There is comfort food, and there is Extreme Comfort Food.  Comfort food includes things like pastina, and eggs with soldiers, and macaroni and cheese in any form.  Extreme comfort food is what you make when times call for desperate measures.  I’m talking shredded chicken.  I’m talking buttered cream sauce.  I’m talking pouring all of that over mashed potatoes and surrounding it with peas.

Extreme Comfort Food is what is called for when your teenager…the baby you birthed for hours on end, the toddler who called you Mama and held your hand when you crossed the street, the grade-schooler whose hair you fixed in pigtails and whose Pokeman lunchbox you filled with millions of pb&j sandwiches, the teenager who goes with you to get your nails done and who tells you when you are singing the wrong words to Single Ladies…when she gets The Envelope.

The envelope that basically says, in several short months she is going to pack her Harry Potter books and her green nail polish and her Batman Converse sneakers and LEAVE you to go FOURTEEN HOURS away to COLLEGE. Ever since the Envelope arrived, she’s been wearing this shirt a lot.

And painting her toes in the school colors….

And throwing her arms around me and saying, “I’m going to miss you SO much, Mommy.”  With a big old smile on her adorable face.

Anyway, desperate times call for desperate measures.  Desperate times call for chicken that is shredded and cooked in a butter cream sauce served over mashed potatoes and surrounded by peas.  I’m planning to make and eat this every day for the next six months, and then I am going to drop her off and hug and kiss her 1000 times, and then cry for the entire 14 hour car ride home, including any and all rest stops.  The Southern husband is already mentally preparing himself.


I’m sorry, just because you are wearing a Clemson University dog collar, it doesn’t mean you get to go.  You are staying right here with me.  Someone’s gotta do it.  Deep breath and away we go!

Butter Chicken
  • 2 chicken breasts on the bone
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons minced parsley
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Grated zest of one lemon
  • Fresh ground pepper
  • ¼ cup chicken broth
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  1. Preheat oven to 37 Rub chicken with olive oil and season with salt and pepper, and roast for about 45-50 minutes or until done. Remove from oven and let cool. Remove meat from the bone, tearing into bite-sized pieces.
  2. Melt butter in large skillet. Add lemon juice, lemon zest, chicken broth and pepper and simmer for about 5 minutes. Add cream and cook, without boiling, until sauce is hot. Add chicken and cook until warmed through.
  3. Place a serving of mashed potatoes in the center of each plate and surround with a ring of peas. Spoon chicken and sauce on top, and garnish with parsley. Serve at once.





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  1. Aww congrats! One of my cousins went to Clemson and absolutely loved it there! if Emma wants to talk to anyone about it, I'd be more than happy to get them in touch!

    However I can also see the need for comfort food. I'm pretty sure my mom flipped out when I moved 15 minutes away for med school. Bring on the butter chicken!

  2. Rachel T. says:

    CONGRATS!!!!! My best friend went there and LOVED it. 14 hours isn't so bad. And she'll miss you a lot, just like I missed my mom. :)

  3. Melissa @IWasBornToCook says:

    How cute is she with the nail polish! Congratulations! The chicken looks great.

  4. Amy's Cooking Adventures says:

    Great recipe, great post. You made me tear up a bit – I am at the baby snuggling in your arms and preschooler calling you Mama and holding you hand stage

  5. I just came across your blog (searching for summer lasagna) and saw that your daughter is going to Clemson! I had to say CONGRATS! I went there, and it was amazing! Clemson really is like a big family – she will absolutely love it there! College may be the best years of her life, but they will be even better because she chose to be a Tiger!

    I'm glad I ended up here…this chicken looks delicious!

  6. congratulations to your girl!

  7. Ana Maria says:

    You're killing me, Smalls. (Name that movie.)
    Sitting at my desk teary-eyed.

  8. Congratulations !! Clemson ! Wonderful !!
    I know how you feel ( twice) and it is surprising how you manage. And how often they come home :)
    It is raining and a chilly fall day, here in BA. I am thinking that butter chicken with mashed potatoes will be perfecto !!
    besos .. C

  9. This looks absolutely amazing. I am going to have to share in your sadness, happiness, proudness, excitedness, etc…and eat (make) some of this. How exciting to have a child go to college. I am virtually passing you a tissue…..

  10. Photocat says:

    You will be fine mom… that is why we get our kids in the first place: to wave them off to college when they reached that stage! Congrats on college and congrats on the yummy comfort food…

  11. She definitely is going to miss your cooking once she gets in the dorm cafeteria line!

  12. AandEmom says:

    That looks yummy! And I so feel your pain! My baby is going away to college this fall too! She won't be 14 hours away (only 2) but it still feels like the other side of the world to me.

  13. Oh how exciting! And terrifying… my mom bawled the whole way home after dropping me off at college. But I had a great experience and I ended up living at home again after school anyway, so it all worked out. (And am now living at home again! I'm pushing 30! Every parent's dream, right?)

  14. Congratulations to Emma! I hope she loves Clemson and the South! it is a great place to be! I am from the midwest and have lived in the South for so long they call me a Damn Yankee- thoese are the Yankees that don't leave! Now you have the perfect excuse to escape all that snow in February and March and get down here! My daughter is a senior in college only 4 hours away. Thought I would cry for weeks when I dropped her off but she was so excited that I was not sad. I hope she loves it!! Great post! I love your blog and recipies!!! Best, Ellen

  15. Cheri Witmer says:

    Congrats! And at the same time I am sorry for you, 14 hours is a long way :( You will all get through it…your post made me laugh and get teary eyed at the same time! Dish looks great and I will have to make this soon!

    Kitchen Comments

    Thanks for the wonderful site!

  16. Aw, what a sweet, sad post. Congrats to your daughter, though! You must be so proud.

  17. Mario Parras says:

    Man, now I need some Extreme comfort food. A mother's love is awesome!! Thank you for sharing.

  18. She is going to miss you just as much as you miss her! Take it from college senior, it's very true!

  19. Anonymous says:

    Sniff :( Congrats to her! She'll do great, but this post did make my eyes "water"…and I have a 4 month old.

  20. Just added you to my Favorites list recently. We live just down the road from Clemson in Columbia, SC. Even though we live in Gamecock country, we're Tiger fans. Our dog has the same collar. Hope your daughter will love Clemson!

  21. Just remember, you raised her well…you have nothing to worry about. Congrats!

  22. I'm sad for you! I just signed my oldest up for Kindergarten and it's killing me – I couldn't imagine one moving out and away. She'll do great though!

  23. Katie Freel Smith says:

    Oh my goodness!!! Congrats!!! Were from SC and my brother walked on with the Tiger's football team at Clemson – your daughter is going to LOVE it there! Chin up Mama, though I was always close to my own, we got especially close even after I went away for college.

    Stumbled on you blog through Pioneer Woman 😉

    And couldn't help but notice your lovely Portmeirion Botanic Garden – I have the same and love it so much!!

  24. There should have been a disclaimer at the beginning of this post for all pregnant women- "Will Produce Great Amount of Tears."

  25. That sounds so good! I'm going to print this out so I can make it this weekend.

  26. That sounds yummy!
    Husband is a Clemson Grad and I used to work for them after we got married! We grew up about 15 miles from campus! Yea for her!!

  27. I think this should be called cream lemon chicken . This is the way I would want my lemon chicken to come out.


  1. […] Print Butter Chicken Ingredients2 chicken breasts on the bone Olive oil Salt and pepper 4 tablespoons butter 2 tablespoons minced parsley 1 tablespoon lemon juice Grated zest of one lemon Fresh ground pepper 1/4 cup chicken broth 1/2 cup heavy cream Directions1. Preheat oven to 375. Rub chicken with olive oil and season with salt Continue Reading …Recipe link:framedcooks.com […]

  2. […] Print Butter Chicken Ingredients2 chicken breasts on the bone Olive oil Salt and pepper 4 tablespoons butter 2 tablespoons minced parsley 1 tablespoon lemon juice Grated zest of one lemon Fresh ground pepper 1/4 cup chicken broth 1/2 cup heavy cream Directions1. Preheat oven to 375. Rub chicken with olive oil and season with salt Continue Reading …I found it here: framedcooks.com […]

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