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Tuesday, October 27, 2009

New Recipe! Parmesan Crusted Chicken with Green & Black Olive Tapenade

Ah, chicken breast. How many ways can we cook it before we're utterly sick of it?! Well, I was trying to use some leftovers in the fridge tonight (specifically, the black olives and Parmesan cheese from pizza night!) and I made up this recipe. My husband can tell you that when I "go rogue" like this, it can often be disastrous -- but this one was so good that I had to post it. Enjoy and feel free to improvise with what you have on hand!

Parmesan Crusted Chicken with Green & Black Olive Tapenade

(Note: If you don't like -- or have -- olives, a great substitution would be chopped sun dried tomatoes. However, this chicken is so flavorful and juicy that it doesn't really need a topping! Also, resist the urge to add salt while cooking, as both the olives and Parmesan cheese are very salty. Salt to taste later if you need it!)

Serves 4
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Whites of 2 eggs
1 cup of Parmesan cheese (shredded or grated)
1 tsp minced garlic
Couple shakes each of dried oregano, basil and black pepper
1 tbsp olive oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Put egg whites in one shallow dish and combine cheese, garlic and spices in another shallow dish. Heat olive oil on medium/high in a large, oven-safe skillet. Reduce heat to medium. Dip each chicken breast in the egg whites, then dip in cheese mixture to coat. Brown in skillet, 2 minutes per side. Insert meat thermometer probe into thickest part of one breast, cover skillet with lid or foil, and bake in oven until thermometer reads 170 degrees.

To make the olive tapenade, roughly chop green olives (with or without pimentos) and black olives. Toss with 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic and some freshly ground black pepper to taste.

Top each chicken breast with a spoonful or two of the tapenade. Serve with a vegetable -- sorry, but taters don't count as veggies in Svelte Gourmet land! -- and the Svelte Gourmet Signature Salad. You'll have a meal so full of rich flavors, you won't miss the fat. I promise!

Please let me know how you've improvised or share your favorite chicken breast recipes -- I could use some inspiration!
To order The Svelte Gourmet: A Month of Main Courses cookbook, please visit www.thesveltegourmet.com/products.html.

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