This weekend was a dual celebration. It was my Mum's Parsi roj birthday (which I'll be explaining and posting about shortly) and Valentino Rossi's amazing win this weekend at the British leg of the Moto GP- so I had two reasons to celebrate!
Mum was in the mood for something different to the usual and as a huge fan of Valentino Rossi I was inspired to try something with an Italian flair. With some ideas from the latest Taste.com.au magazine, a bounty of fresh, organic Italian flat leaf parsley, courtesy of my sister-in-law's garden patch (thank you sis) and a trip to the market for fragrant basil, gorgeous baby tomatoes and last but not least some cute baby bocconcini and spicy salami, well it wasn't hard to create this deliciously easy, "throw everything in" one pan, rustic looking chicken dish.
Some people are reluctant to cook with chicken breast because they think it's hard to cook right but if you follow my tips and tricks as below in the recipe method, you will have moist and succulent chicken breasts every time! This recipe serves four people and I used two large frying pans on the go at the same time but you can easily halve this recipe for two people and use just one pan.
It's a great dish to try when you want something healthy, nutritious and flavorsome without a lot of effort and as we sat down to eat this with some freshly made garlic bread we soon realized we had a winner!
Add some olives or chopped marinated capsicum for a different flavor combination
Experiment with other herbs
You can use regular bocconcini and simply cube if you don't want to use baby bocconcini
if you want to keep the fat down omit the salami
YOU WILL NEED
3 large or 4 medium chicken breasts cut into 2-3 pieces length ways (from longest end to longest end. If the breasts are smaller cut in half only, if larger, three pieces is best.)
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 small brown onion finely chopped
2 large garlic cloves crushed
1 cup finely chopped salami
Salt & pepper to taste
2 tablespoons chopped basil
1-2 tablespoons chopped Italian flat leaf parsley
400g | 14 ounces red baby or cherry tomatoes chopped in half
200g | 7 ounces baby bocconcini
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon brown sugar
Rice bran oil/olive oil for pan frying
Extra basil leaves and flat leaf parsley to serve.
In a medium sized mixed bowl add your cut chicken breasts and sprinkle over the baking soda. Mix well and ensure the pieces are evenly covered with the baking soda, cover and set aside in the fridge for 15-20 minutes.
In a large pan add enough oil to thinly cover the entire base of your pan. Heat the oil on high heat and add the onions and garlic. Turn down the heat to medium and cook until the onions and garlic become fragrant and lightly browned. Empty the mixture into a small bowl, add the chopped basil, parsley and salami, mix together and set aside.
After 15-20 mins, THOROUGHLY rinse your chicken breasts to ensure there is no baking soda on your chicken, pat dry and season both sides with salt and pepper.
Take two large frying pans and add enough oil to cover the entire base, heat the oil over med-high heat.
Divide the chicken breasts between your two pans and turn the heat down to medium. Allow to brown on one side. Turn and repeat on the other side. (Roughly 5 minutes per side and there should be no pink meat at all). Once cooked, turn off the stove and spoon the onion and herb mixture evenly over the chicken.
Preheat your grill to high.
In a separate bowl add the red wine vinegar and brown sugar to the halved baby tomatoes and mix to combine.
Add the baby tomatoes, dividing evenly, between the two pans.
Add the baby bocconcini over the chicken, dividing evenly between the two pans, Cut into halves if the balls aren't staying where you want them.
Place under the grill for a few minutes until the cheese becomes golden brown and bubbles..
Remove from the grill and top with extra fresh basil and flat leaf parsley. Add an extra crack of fresh pepper if desired.
Serve hot with garlic bread, buttered, herb pasta and/or fresh salad if desired. Tutti a tavola a mangiare!