Hi everyone. I know it’s been quite awhile since I’ve written but for someone who doesn’t have a job right now, I’ve been amazingly busy! Well, first I must let you, my dear readers, know that I got a new job! I was very lucky to find something in such a short period of time. I am grateful and humble and excited to get back to work. Not sure when I start but within 1-2 weeks at this point. Thanks again for all of your well wishes.
Back to the FOOD! I found this recipe for Feta, Herb, and Sun-Dried Tomato Stuffed Chicken in the April 2007 issue of Cooking Light. I didn’t initially plan on making this and it didn’t seem any different than other stuffed chickens I’ve made. This recipe came to be made after staring intensely at my chicken trying to figure out what to do with it and realizing I had all of the ingredients for this recipe after flipping through the magazine.
I must admit I did make some drastic changes to get this recipe done. One of the biggest changes was due to my laziness admittedly. The recipe calls to be made in aluminum foil packets. Yup, too lazy to do that. I baked them in a glass casserole dish. The result was still tasty but a little dry. I also used dried oregano instead of fresh and used sun-dried tomatoes that were packed in oil (because I had them on hand).
I had also made pesto the day before from Giada DeLaurentis’ Giada’s Family Dinners and chose to use that with Costco spinach ravioli (soooo good – and I loathe spinach). Overall, the chicken was good but dry. If I made it again, I would follow the directions and bake it in the foil. The pesto, which was the typical pesto recipe, was very good and I would definitely make it again. The flavor of the pesto raviolis and stuffed chicken were nice compliments to one another. Enjoy!
from Giada DeLaurentis’ Giada’s Family Dinners
2 c. packed fresh basil leaves
1/4 c. toasted pine nuts (light roast nuts in small skillet until lightly toasted and fragrant)
1 garlic clove
1/2 tsp. salt, plus more to taste
1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper, plus more to taste
about 2/3 c. extra virgin olive oil
1/2 c. Parmesan cheese
In blender, pulse basil, nuts, garlic, salt, and pepper until finely chopped. Gradually add enough oil to form a smooth, thick consistency (while blender is running). Transfer to bowl and add cheese. Season with more salt and pepper as necessary. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
Feta, Herb, and Sun-Dried Tomato-Stuffed Chicken
Sun-dried tomatoes and fresh basil temper tangy feta in a savory chicken breast stuffing. Serve with quick-cooking orzo pasta tossed with fresh parsley.
2 cups water
1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes, packed without oil
1/2 cup (2 ounces) crumbled feta cheese
2 teaspoons chopped fresh basil
1 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
4 (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon rind
1/4 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
2 teaspoons thinly sliced fresh basil (optional)
Preheat oven to 425°.Bring 2 cups water to a boil in a small saucepan; add tomatoes. Remove from heat; cover and let stand for 5 minutes. Drain and slice into thin strips. Combine tomatoes, cheese, 2 teaspoons chopped basil, oregano, garlic, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a small bowl.
Place chicken breast halves between 2 sheets of heavy-duty plastic wrap, and pound each piece to an even thickness using a meat mallet or small heavy skillet. Cut a horizontal slit through one side of each chicken breast half to form a deep pocket. Stuff 1/4 cup tomato mixture into each pocket. Sprinkle both sides of chicken with salt and remaining 1/2 teaspoon pepper.
Fold 4 (16 x 12-inch) sheets of heavy-duty aluminum foil in half crosswise. Open foil; place 1 1/2 teaspoons butter on half of each foil sheet. Lay one stuffed chicken breast half on top of each portion of butter. Place 1/8 teaspoon grated lemon rind on top of each stuffed chicken breast half, and drizzle each serving with 1 tablespoon chicken broth. Fold foil over chicken, and tightly seal edges. Place packets on a baking sheet. Bake packets at 425° for 20 minutes. Remove from oven, and let stand for 5 minutes. Unfold packets carefully, and thinly slice each chicken breast half. Garnish each serving with 1/2 teaspoon sliced basil, if desired. Serve immediately.
Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 packet)
CALORIES 311 (29% from fat); FAT 10.1g (sat 5.7g,mono 2g,poly 0.7g); PROTEIN 43g; CHOLESTEROL 121mg; CALCIUM 77mg; SODIUM 572mg; FIBER 2.5g; IRON 1.6mg; CARBOHYDRATE 8.2g
Cooking Light, APRIL 2007