By Jared Young


oregano derives from the plant of the same name. it is native to western and southwestern Eurasia.we use dried oregano leaves as a herb on foods. when the leaves are dry then the leaves become aromatic, warm, and slightly bitter in taste. some health benefits include: treatment of gastrointestinal disorders, menstrual cramps, and urinary tract disorders. also applied to help treat acne and dandruff, it also contains fiber, iron, calcium, omega fatty acids, manganese, and typtophan. it is also prominent in vitamin k and dietary antioxidants. it is also considered a savory herb. an interesting fact is that it is more flavorful when dry than when it's wet. another interesting fact is that when it is good quality it may almost numb the tongue.

Sample Recipe



1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano

2 teaspoons grated lime rind

1 teaspoon ground cumin

2 teaspoons minced garlic

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper $

4 bone-in, skin-on chicken breast halves (about 3 pounds)

2 teaspoons olive oil $

1/2 teaspoon salt $


1 tablespoon all-purpose flour $

1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

1 cup fat-free, lower-sodium chicken broth

1 tablespoon tequila

1/2 teaspoon lime juice

See a Hawaiian Sweet & Sour Sausage Recipe


1. To prepare chicken, combine first 5 ingredients in a small bowl. Loosen skin from breast halves by inserting fingers, gently pushing between skin and meat. Rub the oregano mixture evenly under loosened skin of each breast half. Arrange chicken breasts in a shallow dish; cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours.

2. Preheat oven to 375°.

3. Heat oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle chicken with salt. Add chicken to pan, skin side down; cook 5 minutes or until browned. Turn chicken over, and transfer to oven. Bake at 375° for 25 minutes or until chicken is done. Remove chicken from pan, reserving 1 1/2 tablespoons drippings; set chicken aside, and keep warm.

4. To prepare sauce, heat reserved drippings in pan over medium-high heat. Add flour and 1/4 teaspoon cumin to pan, and cook for 30 seconds, stirring constantly with a whisk. Add chicken broth, 1 tablespoon tequila, and lime juice, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Bring to a boil, and cook until reduced to about 2/3 cup (about 2 minutes), stirring occasionally. Serve with chicken.


Jackie Mills, MS, RD,

APRIL 2010

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