How are we already in mid-August? It’s crazy that summer is almost over and Fall is just around the corner. The weather this week in the DC-area has been very Fall-like. I’m talking about waking up to 58 degree weather and having it only be in the mid-70’s with a light breeze. We were very lucky to not have gotten the heat and humidity that this area is used to. Haha, now I’m really scared for what winter has in store for us!
I’m starting to see Fall recipes pop up all over my Pinterest feed and while that’s all nice and dandy, I just want to halt summer for just a little longer! I feel that it gets cooler so much faster than it gets hot and there’s not enough summer warmth to go around. I already feel the days getting shorter :( not going to be a happy camper once it hits daylight savings and leaving work at 4pm is basically like going home at 7pm! I honestly don’t mind Fall because I love brisk jean and t-shirt weather, but it just seemed like summer went by in a blink of an eye! I think I need to move to the West coast since I crave sunshine and warm weather. Now, to make that happen is a different story. My brother recently did it! I should follow suit ;)
I’ve heard of this recipe before and it’s one of those really quick dinner options for those busy nights. I bought (the wrong) Russian dressing a while back (like, 6 months ago) intending to make this Russian apricot chicken ’cause everyone raves about it but I never got around to doing so until now obviously. What was I thinking waiting so long? I love the sweet and tangy flavor of the chicken and the sauce is plate-licking good! If you like sweet and tangy, you’ll love this chicken!
Don’t make the same mistake as me and buy creamy Russian dressing (like the one you use in ruebens) – you need to buy the red oily type one that’s basically catalina dressing. I honestly don’t know why Wishbone calls it Russian dressing when it’s really catalina dressing and to make it more confusing, they have both the creamy and the non-creamy version. This recipe won’t work if you use the creamy one – I feel like it’d just be like a pepto bismol color and not very appetizing! Since I bought the wrong kind and I didn’t want to go back to the store, I ended up making my own catalina dressing for this recipe so that is below and I suggest you make it from scratch so you don’t get the wrong dressing :) you’ll definitely make the right dressing if you use the recipe below!
Russian Apricot Chicken
For the catalina/Russian dressing
- 1/2 cup ketchup
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
For the chicken
- 1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs (I highly recommend thighs)*
- 1 package of dry onion soup mix
- 1 cup catalina dressing
- 1 cup apricot preserves
- In a large bowl, whisk together all the ingredients for the catalina/Russian dressing.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking pan with two layers of foil and place chicken into the pan.
- In a measuring cup, whisk together onion soup mix, catalina dressing, and apricot preserves.
- Pour the mixture all over the chicken.
- Bake uncovered for 40-50 minutes, or when the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 160 degrees Fahrenheit.
- While baking, you'll want to baste it often with either a brush or a baster. Just so the chicken gets re-coated with the delicious sauce.
- If you want, 5 minutes or so before the chicken is done, you can pop it under the broiler to get the sauce to caramelize a bit on the chicken but this is totally optional.
- Serve with your favorite veggies or grains.