I find that on many occasions it’s the simple things in life that can bring the most pleasure. The same is true of food. For every recipe with an ingredients list as long as your arm there is one where you can count the components on the fingers of one hand. Steak Frites has always been the example I use to explain what I mean. Two basic ingredients – beef and potatoes – that when combined properly bring so much pleasure.
I could easily make the same argument with the Caprese Salad. With nothing more than Mozzarella, Tomatoes and Basil (and maybe a touch of olive oil) you can create magic. Knowing that these three ingredients work together so well, it’s not much of a leap to want to use them together in other ways.
I’ve done just that in this recipe for Chicken Caprese – admittedly with a few changes. Here I’ve added some fresh spinach leaves to add a bit more moisture and colour – as I felt that adding more basil would be overpowering. I’ve also used both sundried and fresh tomatoes – as the fresh variety aren’t always bursting with flavour here in the UK. One thing I haven’t scrimped on at all is the mozzarella!
The ingredients are used as a topping for chicken breasts to ensure the flavours permeate every mouthful. This dish really does capture the flavours of Summer, even in the darkest depths of winter. Why not give it a go and keep the January blues at bay.
- 1 tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 small Red Onion peeled and finely chopped
- 2 cloves Garlic peeled and crushed
- 75 g Sundried Tomatoes puréed
- 2 Tomatoes deseeded and chopped
- 50 g Baby Spinach washed and shredded
- 12 Basil Leaves shredded
- 2 Skinless Chicken Breast Fillets
- ½ tsp Sea Salt
- ½ tsp Freshly Ground Black Pepper
- 75 g Mozzarella sliced
- Pre-heat the oven to 180°C
- Heat the olive oil in a frying pan over a medium heat. Add the onion and sauté for 5 minutes or so, until starting to soften. Stir frequently to ensure it doesn’t burn.
- Add in the garlic, then cook for a further minute until fragrant. Pour in the sundried tomatoes and fresh tomatoes, then stir through the onion mixture. Bring to a simmer, then add the shredded spinach and basil to the pan. Cook until any excess moisture has gone and you’re left with a thick paste. Remove from the heat.
- Place the chicken breast fillets between two sheets of cling film and bash with a rolling pin until they’re around 2cm in thickness. Lightly season the chicken breasts with the salt and pepper, then place onto a baking sheet.
- Spread half of the tomato mixture onto the top of each chicken breast, ensuring they’re well coated. Transfer to the oven and bake for 15 minutes.
- Remove the chicken from the oven and top with the sliced mozzarella. Return to the oven and bake for a further 10-15 minutes until the cheese has melted and started to turn golden brown.
- Serve straight from the oven.
|Estimated Values per Serving|
|of which Saturates||6||g|
|of which Sugars||13||g|
|Note: Nutritional information shown is per serving of the above recipe. Any side dishes or garnishes shown in photos are not included in these values, unless they are specifically listed as part of the recipe.|