I discovered this recipe for pesto on a beautiful blog called What Katie Ate a few years back. Katie made this goat cheese pesto in a tomato tart which I tried and liked. But it was the pesto that stuck with me. My roommate and I could devour a cup of the stuff in an absurd amount of time and I made it many times when I was living in San Francisco.
I sort of forgot about the pesto, but I recently made a recipe that involved stuffing a chicken breast with apricots, and it seemed like using the pesto would be awesome. So that's what I tried tonight: a chicken breast stuffed with goat cheese pesto and sun-dried tomatoes. Delicious!
|Fresh from the garden. And yes, I'm actually managing to keep basil alive these days!|
Pesto Stuffed Chicken
1 chicken breast
2 tbsp pesto (recipe below)
1 tbsp sun-dried tomatoes (chopped)
Pesto: (adapted from What Katie Ate)
Makes 12 tbsp servings
2 handfuls of basil
1/4 cup pine nuts
1/8 cup olive oil
1/8 cup grape seed oil
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
100 g goat cheese (I used a 113 g goat cheese log)
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
Salt and Pepper to taste
For the pesto, toast the pine nuts for a few minutes until they start to brown and smell yummy.
Add all of the pesto ingredients to a food processor (or blender). Blend until well-mixed. It's not the prettiest pesto, (kind of a bleh color), but it tastes wonderful.
Heat your over to 350 degrees. Pound the chicken to make it as flat as possible- this will help it cook evenly and quickly. At the fattest portion of the breast, start cutting a pocket, without cutting through to the other side.
Mix the pesto with half the sun-dried tomatoes and stuff into the chicken. This is a cool trick I learned: use a couple of toothpicks to "sew" up the pocket in the chicken. It's amazing how well this works.
|Although this pictures makes the chicken look nasty, check out the toothpick "sewing".|
Heat a small amount of oil in a skillet that can be transferred to the oven. Cook the chicken breast for 4-5 minutes on each side until it's nice and golden. It won't be cooked all the way through yet, but no worries!
Transfer to the oven and cook 20 minutes. I found that the extra oil burned, so I probably will try to drain any extra oil before I transfer it to the oven next time.
Remove from oven and top with the remaining sun-dried tomatoes. Enjoy with some brown rice and a side salad.