Friday, February 3, 2012

Super simple supper

Last night, PB and pondered over what to have for dinner. We don't run a chock a block fridge and pantry and besides seasonings and canned tomatoes and beans, we basically buy our groceries each week based on our specific meal plan and then it's gone. The only organic waste we have is that of peelings or inedible components such as avocado pits( lots of these), chicken bones and brocoli stalks. We have zero food wastage as we usually plan very well and we are both good in the kitchen so can improvise well with very little. Last night was one of those nights. We had protein in the form of chicken breasts which we had recently stocked up on at Sobeys BOGO event. Pretty good deal and we buy about 20 chicken breasts and then portion them up into freezer bags, 2 per bag, so we can use them as needed. But that was as far as the plan had gone. I scoured the fridge door and cupboards for inspiration and decided to make stuffed chicken breast with pesto. Super simps, fast and really tasty. We had carrots and peas on the side which we simply steam, and that is the usual side dish for most meals, or we use broccoli... gotta get those greens.
I pounded out the chicken breast with my *new* meat mallet I bought earlier and then put a tablespoon of red pesto in the middle, topped with torn basil leaves and then rolled them up.
I heated olive oil in a frying pan and seared the rolled breasts on each side until browned, about 30-60 seconds per side. I didn't have any picks or string to tie them with so I started browning them on the seam side down to try and seal it but when I turned them, the seal looked weak so I just held the breasts with the tongs as I browned the other side.
I then squeezed a random lone lemon half over them and baked them in the oven at 375F for about 25 mins, which turned out to be a little too long, 2o mins would probably have sufficed.
When done, I drizzled the juices from the pan over the chicken and voila...dinner is served.
I used red pesto but you could easily do this with green pesto and on another day, I would like to make my own pesto. I also imagine the addition of goats cheese to the filling would be amazing.
Here is the summary of the recipe:

Pesto stuffed chicken
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 tbsp red or green pesto
few basils leaves, torn
juice of half a lemon
salt and pepper for seasoning

Heat oven to 375F.
Flatten chicken to approx 1/2 inch thick.
Place pesto in middle, with basil and roll up chicken (secure with pick or string if possible)
Sear chicken rolls in pan over med-high heat.
Place in baking dish, pour over lemon juice and bake in oven for 20 mins or until cooked through.

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