(Aren't low quality cell phone pictures the best? I know, I agree.)
Is this recipe healthy in the slightest? No, probably not. But I can guarantee that it will knock your socks off--or whatever happens to be on your feet at the time. I'm always on the lookout for easy and delicious meals I can make, with an emphasis on the easy. I wish I were the kind of person who wanted to spend 3 hours in the kitchen each day after work, concocting some delicious meal for Ben and myself. Unfortunately, I'm not. And the people I do know who are like that, come very few and far in between. P.S. - I'm not quite sure where this recipe came from, but I definitely didn't come up with it myself.
Tomato Basil Chicken
prep & cook time: 30 minutes
2 chicken breasts
salt and pepper
1/2 packet of Italian seasoning (I used the Good Seasons brand)
about 2 T. olive oil
2 c. chopped fresh tomatoes
3 t. minced fresh garlic
4 T. cold butter
1/2 c. fresh basil, chopped
grated Parmigiano reggiano cheese for garnish
1. Season chicken breasts with salt, black pepper, and Italian seasoning.
2. Add a couple of tablespoons of olive oil to your skillet. This may seem like quite a bit, but it will form the base for the sauce.
3. While waiting for the oil to heat up, go ahead and get your water going for the pasta. If you don't do it early, you'll have to sit and wait on the pasta to be done at the end.
4. When the oil is HOT, add the chicken breasts. If the oil does not start sizzling immediately, then it's not hot enough! Adding meat to cold/cool oil will give you greasy meat!
5. After about 4-5 minutes, the chicken breasts should be ready to turn. You'll want to cook them on the second side another 4-5 minutes, or until the juices run clear when you pierce them with a small sharp knife. You don't want to OVER cook them, or they will be dry and tough. If you pounded yours out thinner, they will cook faster than this.
6. After the second side has been cooking for about 4 minutes, go ahead and add in the fresh tomatoes that you have chopped up. There will be lots of steam, spitting, and sputtering!
7. Next, add the fresh basil that you have chopped into ribbons, and the garlic.
8. Cut the butter into a few pieces and add to the pan. This will make the sauce silky.
9. Now give it all a good stir so all those flavors will marry together. When your chicken is "done," turn the sauce down on the lowest setting to keep it all warm until the pasta is cooked, which should be any minute now. :) At this point, if still waiting for the pasta, you can remove the cooked chicken to a cutting board, and after resting just a couple of minutes, cut the chicken into slices on the bias.
10. Divide the pasta among individual bowls, and top each with half of a chicken breast, sliced into pieces, and equal portions of the tomato basil sauce. Top with more fresh basil and freshly grated Parmigiana reggiano cheese.