Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Caprese Chicken

Back in November, I was looking for a new and tasty but easy to prepare dish that I could serve when we invited our priest to dinner. In my search, I discovered a creative recipe for Caprese chicken from The Novice Chef, and it turned out delicious.

Last night, in my efforts to finish up a few odds and ends around the kitchen, I realized I had the ingredients to make Caprese chicken again. But this time, I added a few slight twists to make it my own.

The beauty of this recipe is that you can easily multiply the ingredients to increase the servings - or just make it for one! Here's how I made it.

Caprese Chicken
Ingredients (for one serving)

  • one 4-6 ounce boneless, skinless chicken breast
  • 1/4 cup Italian salad dressing
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1/2 pint cherry or grape tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon shredded fresh basil, divided
  • 2 ounces mozzarella cheese, sliced
  • Balsamic vinegar to taste
  • Pasta of choice, cooked according to package directions
To begin, marinate the chicken in the salad dressing for a couple hours. The longer it marinates, the more flavorful it becomes. If your chicken is on the thick side, you can pound it out to a more even thickness.

When ready to begin, heat the olive oil in a 10-inch nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Add the chicken and brown on both sides, about 4 minutes per side. Then remove the chicken from the skillet.

Add the tomatoes to the skillet and saute, tossing frequently, for about five minutes, or until the skins are starting to char and the tomatoes look ready to burst.

Add the chicken broth. (If you want to kick it up a notch, reduce the chicken broth to 1/4 cup and also use 1/4 cup of a dry white wine.) Slice the chicken on a slight bias into two pieces (unless you have pounded the chicken to an even thickness) and return to the skillet. Sprinkle with Italian seasoning, salt and pepper. Then cover and let it simmer on medium heat for about 20 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through.

Flip the chicken about halfway through the cooking time, and add half the shredded basil at that point as well.

Meanwhile, slice the mozzarella as thinly as possible. I had some little single-serving packs, so my slices were on the small side.

Once the chicken is cooked, carefully cover the top of each breast with the mozzarella. Replace the cover and let cook over low heat for about five minutes, until the cheese has melted.

Serve over the pasta of your choice. Right before bringing it to the table, sprinkle the top with the remaining fresh basil and drizzle with balsamic vinegar.


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