The Moveable Feast Food Blog

The Moveable Feast is a Personal Chef Service that serves the Hampton Roads area of Southern Virginia. This blog is an extension of my web site and will go into more details about food and any food service industries. Any pictures and or recipes that are published here are all the property of The Moveable Feast unless otherwise noted.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Yet another use for Pesto!
I made so much Pesto last fall that I froze it. I still have some in the zip bag and when I read this recipe, I knew I had a short cut for dinner! I am all about not spending a lot of time doing dinner on a weeknight. I would rather fuss around with food on the weekend when I have more time. It’s supposed to rain all weekend so I will have plenty of time in the house since I won’t be in the fledging garden.

This recipe is from the same place as the Primavera Chicken Brochettes. I really liked this recipe and it got a thumb’s up from hubby. Leftovers are on the menu for tomorrow for hubby at work. This recipe has a lot of ingredients but you can take some short cuts which I will talk about at the end. Here we go!

Chicken Ala Biagio
Serves 4

4 Chicken breasts, boneless, skinless
Salt and pepper to taste

Pesto Filling
8 oz fresh basil stems removed
2 medium cloves of garlic
3 oz pine nuts
1/8 cup olive oil
1/8 cup Parmesan cheese

2 cups Italian Blend cheese, shredded
½ cup all-purpose flour
2 eggs, beaten
¾ cup Italian bread crumbs
¾ cup butter

Sun-Dried Tomato Caper-Sauce
1 TBS olive oil
3 medium shallots, finely minced
2 medium garlic cloves, minced
8 sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained and minced
1 cup white wine
1/8 cup heavy cream
2 TBS capers, drained
¼ tsp thyme, fresh
4 TBS butter
1/8 cup parsley, minced
Fresh basil, garnish

Place chicken breasts between sheets of plastic wrap and pound with meat mallet to even thickness about ¼ inches. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

To make Pesto, place basil, garlic, pine nuts, olive oil, and parmesan cheese in a food processor with steel blade and process to a paste-like consistency. It may be prepared in advanced and refrigerated.

Preheat oven to 350F. Place equal portion of Italian Cheese in center of each flattened breast and spoon 1 TBS prepared Pesto in center of cheese. Roll breasts, tucking in ends, to completely enclose filling. Secure with toothpicks. Unused Pesto may be frozen for later use.

Place flour, beaten egg and breadcrumbs in three separate shallow dishes. Lightly coat filled chicken breast with flour, dusting off excess. Brush all sides with egg and then roll in breadcrumbs. Repeat with other breasts. Heat ¾ cup butter in heavy skillet until melted. Brown filled breasts on all sides. Transfer to lightly greased baking pan and bake 20-30 minutes until temperature on meat thermometer reaches 160F and juices run clean when pierced with knife.

To prepare sauce, place 1 TBS oil in saucepan. Sauté shallots, garlic and sun-dried tomatoes until tender. Add wine and cook until reduced by half. Gradually add cream while stirring. Add caper and thyme and again reduce by half. Whisk in butter, 1 TBS at a time until consistency is creamy. Add parsley and season to taste with salt and pepper.

To serve, remove toothpicks and place on a serving dish. Top each breast with sauce. Garnish with fresh basil of desired.

Note: I think you can save yourself some time if you buy the jarred Pesto and then freeze the rest in an ice cube tray for later creations. I also don't like using regular bread crumbs so I made a mixture of Panko bread crumbs with dried basil, oregano and thyme. I like the flakiness of the Panko much better than the other recommended crumbs. I cut some of the fat out of the recipe by using dried Sun-Dried tomatos and soaked them in boiling water about 15-20 minutes. They worked just fine in the sauce without being soaked in olive oil. There is way too much butter to saute the chicken breasts in. I ended up throwing about half of it away. You do need the in the last part of the recipe for the sauce, no skimping on that part.


At 7:34 AM, Blogger s'kat said...

Sounds delicious, and what a wonderful job you did on plating! If only DucCat liked sun-dried tomatoes, I'd be all over this for dinner tonight!

At 11:32 AM, Blogger michelle said...

What? Blogger hates me! I posted both on the grilling post and in reply to your comments to my comments (wow, that's a lot in one sentance) in the one below that. Grrr...

I love the presentation on this - look at you, you star! Especially the asparagus underneath! I need to go get some more capers, because I really want to try this now. Can I copy your presentation?!!

I can't wait to get out grilling - I still don't believe it, but we're on our THIRD gorgeous day - not a single cloud in the sky! I probably just jinxed us all, but I don't care! Have a wonderfully happy thursday Vickie!

At 12:33 PM, Blogger vlb5757 said...

S'kat- you can just leave the sun-dried tomatoes out and use regular canned diced tomatoes, or how about a can of Rotel? That would spice up the sauce a bit. It give it a Mexican flavor instead of Italian but it's a small world we do fusion! lol!

Michelle-You are so funny girl! I had a hard time leaving a comment on Farmgirl Fare the other day. I typed this really long comment and went back to see if she responded and it was GONE. I didn't re-type it. I was exhausted from the first time!

I never get to play with plate presentation with my job. So it's been a learning experience doing it at home. Of course it was wrecked 2 seconds after I took the picture and a microwaved baked potato was slapped on the plate for my carb side. Hubby ate his on our regular dinner plates. He jokes me all the time about my pictures.

Copy anything you like! But eat it's not as good cold.

At 6:30 AM, Blogger Melissa CookingDiva said...

Vickie, I guess I do not have any other choice than preparing pesto today. You have posted this inviting, delicious looking dish, and Ilva has also prepared pesto---and it looks soooo good :)

Have a beautiful day!

At 9:31 AM, Blogger Nerissa said...

OH.MY.GOD. This looks SOOO good. Now I'm just kicking myself for using up the last of my pesto. With my isolated living situation, it's not exactly easy to get ahold of. I'll have to copy the recipe and wait.


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