Monday, September 28, 2009

Parsley Pesto

I usually don't discriminate with food, enjoying most of it and not claiming one favorite. However, I have already used this recipe 5 or 6 times, and am not one to repeat a recipe more than twice. It's so good and extremely versatile. I've used it in several different pasta recipes, to top of bruschetta, and last night I used it with boneless chicken breasts. So good.

2 cups packed Italian flat leaf parsley
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
1/4 cup walnut pieces
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 garlic clove
salt and pepper
1/4 cup olive oil

Combine first 5 ingredients in blender or food processor. Pulse for several minutes, or until mixture is crumbling. While still pulsing, add olive oil in a slow, steady stream. Continue mixing until you have a nice paste, not liquefied but thoroughly combined. Add salt and pepper to taste.
I have also used spinach in place of the parsley and it was amazing. You can use pecans or pine nuts in place of the walnuts as well.

This is the dinner I made last night:

3 boneless, skin-on chicken breasts, rinsed and sprinkled with salt and pepper
1/4- 1/2 cup Parsley Pesto
4 Red potatoes
1/2 Red onion
1 garlic clove
olive oil
2 heads broccoli, stems cut off

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Keeping the skin on the chicken, place a large spoonful of the pesto under the skin of the chicken, being sure to cover the surface well. Tuck the skin over the pesto. Heat cast iron skillet to medium high, pour in 1 tsp olive oil. Place breasts skin side down on cast iron skillet. Sear for 1-2 minutes or until they are a nice golden color. Flip breasts and immediately place in oven for 15-20 minutes, uncovered. Meanwhile, cut the potatoes into 1" squares. Chop the onion into large chunks. Slice the garlic clove very thinly. Place all these ingredients on a baking sheet sprinkled with olive oil. Pour a thin stream of olive oil over the potatoes and onions and sprinkle with salt. Place in oven for 20-25 minutes or until fork-tender and golden brown.
Steam broccoli for 3 minutes and rinse under cold water. Place back in the pot it was steamed in (water should be drained) on the burner you just used, to keep it warm.
When the chicken is finished cooking, remove it from the oven and cover with tin foil to keep it warm and moist.

That's all!

No comments: