Italian Recipes

Baked Rooster Caprese

January 17, 2022

I love chicken, especially fried chicken. One of my favorite chicken dishes is mine Breaded chicken cutlets with tomatoes and arugula. This is my favorite dish when I have limited time to cook but want to make something tasty and filling. I’m a poultry lover, and since we don’t eat much red meat at home, we eat a lot of vegetable-based dishes, with some seafood and chicken every now and then. I seem to buy a lot of poultry on sale because last week I found a lot of chicken parts while going through my freezer. Because I need to use up that chicken surplus, we’ve been eating a lot of poultry lately. This week I decided to try something new by using up some of my chicken breasts, homemade pesto straight from the freezer and some of our last cherry tomatoes from the garden. I also had two balls of buffalo mozzarella that I had to buy at the grocery store a few days ago because they were so cheap. I could have easily served the mozzarella with the tomatoes as a first course in a caprese salad, but I decided to throw my chicken and pesto into the mix.

I halved the chicken breast lengthwise, breaded it and roasted it in the oven as usual. Then I topped the chicken with slices of buffalo mozzarella and grilled until the cheese was all melted and gooey. I then took the chicken out of the oven and drizzled it with some of my homemade pesto, then spooned on some sweet baby tomatoes I tossed with olive oil and chopped garlic. The chicken was moist and tender, and the combination of melted mozzarella, fresh-tasting pesto sauce, and sweet cherry tomatoes was a perfect topping! I always prefer to make my own homemade breading mix, but if you’re short on time you can use a store-bought version, but it makes a difference in flavor if you make your own. Buffalo mozzarella isn’t necessary, and I just used it because I had it on hand. Buy good quality mozzarella. I wanted to use my garden tomatoes, so I use small cherry tomatoes, but any ripe, good-tasting tomato will work just fine; simply cut into small cubes. If the chicken pieces aren’t even thick, you may want to use a meat tenderizer to create an even thickness and cook evenly.

Enjoy your meal!
Deborah Mele Revised 2022

ingredients

For the chicken:

  • 2 medium to large boneless, skinless chicken breasts, halved lengthwise

  • 3 cups stale bread cubes

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons grated zest of 1 lemon

  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon chopped hot red chilli (optional)

  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves

  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese

  • 1/3 cup pine nuts

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • 2 large eggs

  • 3 tablespoons of butter

  • 4 tablespoons olive oil

For the tomato topping:

  • 2 cups halved cherry tomatoes (or 2 cups diced ripe tomatoes – see notes above)

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 large garlic clove, finely chopped

  • salt & pepper to taste

Put together:

  • 1/3 cup homemade basil pesto

  • 2 small balls of buffalo mozzarella, sliced ​​(or 4 slices of mozzarella)

  • Garnish with fresh basil leaves

instructions

  1. For the chops, place the bread cubes, lemon zest, chilli, parsley, grated cheese, salt and pepper in the food processor and puree until smooth.
  2. Add the pine nuts and pulse until the nuts are coarsely chopped and transfer the mixture to a shallow bowl.
  3. In a separate shallow bowl, beat the eggs.
  4. Working 1 piece of chicken at a time, dip in the eggs, then press down on the breadcrumbs with your fingertips to help the crumbs stick.
  5. Place the breaded chops on a baking sheet and refrigerate for 1 hour to allow the crumb layer to set.
  6. In a small bowl, mix together the ingredients for the tomato topping and set aside until needed.
  7. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  8. Line a large baking pan with aluminum foil, then place the butter and oil on top.
  9. Place the pan in the oven for a few minutes to melt the butter.
  10. Rotate the pan to evenly coat with the butter mixture, then place the chicken on top.
  11. Bake for 15 minutes, then flip and bake an additional 10 minutes, until cooked through.
  12. Remove the chicken from the oven and place the mozzarella on top to cover.
  13. Set the grill to high, then return the pan to the oven and grill until cheese is melted and bubbly.
  14. Place the chicken on a platter, drizzle with the pesto sauce and spoon the tomato mixture over it.
  15. Serve immediately.

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