Ricotta and Basil Stuffed Chicken Breasts √
Note: Ricotta provides the foundation for a simple stuffing flavored with basil and garlic. Fresh tomatoes, mixed with more basil, make a quick and easy sauce that can do double duty as a side salad. From Meredith Deeds.
• 1/2 c. ricotta
• 1/4 c. shredded mozzarella
• 2 tbsp. grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
• 1 small garlic clove, minced
• 1/2 c. julienned fresh basil, divided
• 3/4 tsp. salt, divided
• 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper, divided
• 1 pint cherry tomatoes, quartered
• 3 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
• 4 small skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
To make the filling: In a bowl, combine the ricotta, mozzarella, Parmigiano-Reggiano, garlic, ¼ cup basil, ¼ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper.
In another small bowl, combine the tomatoes, remaining basil, ¼ teaspoon salt, ¼ teaspoon pepper and 2 tablespoons olive oil.
Put 1 chicken breast half on a cutting board and, beginning in middle of side of breast half, horizontally insert a sharp thin knife ¾ of the way through center, moving knife in a fanning motion to create a pocket. Form pocket in remaining breast halves in same manner. Divide filling between pockets and spread evenly with a finger.