Food and Garden Dailies started as a way to record my family's favorite recipes. It has come in handy many times when I'm asked for a recipe. I simply email a link to the blog! But I couldn't just stick to recipes. The kitchen is tied to the garden in so many ways...and so I let you into my ever changing garden as well.

If you're interested in my all-time favorite recipes, check out this post first: My Favorite Recipes

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Cheesy Basil-Stuffed Chicken Breasts

Pin It We made the most scrumptious dinner tonight: Cheesy Basil-Stuffed Chicken Breasts. As Brian said, "Anything called 'cheesy' and 'basil' has got to be good." He was right. This is definitely the next recipe I'll make for company or for our meal exchange. You can prepare it ahead in a baking dish, and just put it in the oven when you're ready to cook it.

I'd like to try freezing it, but am concerned about the mayonnaise which coats the chicken. I'm not too sure that would do well. But, it's worth a try.*

I found the recipe by browsing through my "Recipes to Make" book. I was looking for something that called for fresh basil, which is now at its peak. This recipe jumped out at me, as it also called for cherry tomatoes, which are ripening faster than we can eat them. (Another added bonus, is that we'd just made home-made pizza the other night, so I already had shredded mozzarella.)

*11/10/08: Just before our first fall freeze, I harvested the rest of the basil and made a few batches of this for the freezer. I used the mayo and bread crumb mixture and then placed them in a single layer in a jelly roll pan to flash freeze. Once they were frozen, I put two in a FoodSaver bag and vacuum packed them for later. Last week we tried the frozen ones for the first time and they were just as good! The mayo, which is used as an adhesive for the bread crumbs was just fine. I didn't have any cherry tomatoes on hand, so I chopped up some plum tomatoes instead. That worked just fine.

Cheesy Basil-Stuffed Chicken Breasts
(Cook's Illustrated)

Serves 4

Get out three medium bowls, and place the following ingredients into each one:

Bowl One:
1 C shredded mozzarella cheese
2 TB freshly torn basil
2 TB heavy cream
1 TB fresh lemon juice
2 tsp garlic, minced
1/2 tsp salt

pepper to taste (I just sprinkled some on.)

Bowl Two:
1 C fresh bread crumbs
1 tsp garlic, minced
2 TB freshly torn basil
1 TB extra virgin olive oil

Bowl Three:
1 pint cherry tomatoes , halved
1 TB extra virgin olive oil

1/2 tsp salt
pepper to taste (Again, I just sprinkled some on.)

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Slice a pocket in
4 chicken breasts (don't use thin ones)

Stuff the breasts with cheese mixture, and seal with a toothpick or small skewer.

Spread mayonnaise on the outside of the breasts and dip in the bread mixture, coating the chicken pieces. Press lightly to adhere.

Place in a baking dish, and arrange the tomato mixture around the chicken.

Bake until crumbs are golden brown and thickest part of chicken registers 160 degrees on instant-read thermometer, about 25 minutes. Serve.


~*~Tracey~*~ said...

OMG, that looks good!!! I made chicken cordon blue last week and this looks just as easy. I'll have to try it.


Christina said...

Oh that looks good. I wonder if my picky eaters will try it? I wonder if I care? I'm making it for me!

Rosemary said...

Oh, wow..... That looks wonderful! I agree, anything with cheese and basil, and you can't go wrong. This is on my "to-make" list!

dg said...

Christina, I think picky eaters would eat it. They're nothing really objectionable. If they wouldn't eat the tomatoes, you could smoosh them up to make them saucy (easier once they're cooked).

KraftyKerilou said...

This looks good! I agree with your DH, cheese = good!!

Angelina said...

I don't eat chicken and this sounds good. Anything with basil and cheese has got to kick butt!

I'll bet eggplant would be a good substitute for the chicken. I might try that.

Erin K. said...

I came across your blog today while doing a search for foodsaver tips, and I'm so glad I found all of this great info! Not only did I learn some great tips on using the foodsaver I bought today (happy early birthday present to me - woohoo!), I learned all about canning and found a wealth of wonderful freezer meal ideas. Thank you for sharing all of this! I've bookmarked your site for future reference - I'm sure I'll be back soon. =)

Sophie said...

These look really tasty, looks like a great recipe :).

Frankos said...

Could we substitute roasted red peppers for tomatoes? Not a big tomato fan here but LOVE peppers....not sure they would produce any sauce - important element??

dg said...

For Frankos....just now seeing your comment, so I apologize for the late reply. Roasted red peppers on the side would be great! Tomatoes aren't necessary.