Fritz and I made it back to Long Island late last night and let me tell ya, it was really hard to leave this time. It’s so beautiful in Central (or Upstate…who knows, really, what to call Syracuse) New York at this time of year, and being carefree with family feels so good. Neither of us wanted to come back to reality.
But alas. Reality bites.
I decided to soften the blow that is school, responsibilities, patients, and clinical days by serving up a big and delicious meal made up of many treats that we brought with us from home. It really did help ease the transition.
Chicken Stuffed with Goat Cheese (and Roasted Tomatoes) serves 2-4
- 2 chicken breasts (ours were huge, hence the ability to serve four)
- 2 oz herby goat cheese (I used our new Herbs de Provence Chevre from the Lively Run Goat Dairy, if you use plain goat cheese you may want to jazz it up with some herbs, such as rosemary)
- 3 medium tomatoes
- salt and pepper to taste
- drizzle of olive oil
Apparently I’ve been going for those easy, few-ingredient dinners lately.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. If you have any pent-up aggression you need to release, now is the time. One at a time, slide a chicken breast into a freezer bag and pound it flat with a heavy pan. It doesn’t need to be perfect, so really go to town. You want it to be about half its original thickness and relatively equal all around. Spread one ounce of goat cheese over each chicken breast (spread the cheese on the ugly side, so the smooth side is facing out), season with salt and pepper, and roll up. Use a few toothpicks to hold it in place while it bakes.
Slice the tomatoes in half, and arrange them around the chicken, cut side up. Season with salt and pepper to taste (and a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese wouldn’t be unwarranted here), then drizzle both the chicken and the tomatoes with a bit of olive oil. Bake on the middle rack until the chicken is cooked and the tomatoes are soft, about 15-20 minutes.
I served these beauties with some Syracuse-style salt potatoes and some steamed beet greens from my parents’ garden.
I might like beet greens even more than spinach. So yummy.
This chicken recipe is infinitely customizable–you could add roasted red peppers, olives, capers, or sun-dried tomatoes right on top of the goat cheese before you roll. You can also use other cheeses or herb combinations.
That’s why I love sharing a cooking technique rather than an exact “follow my every step” recipe. You can be inspired by this to make it yours!
And before I leave, I thought I’d show you something else I find inspiring: my baby sister, Jordi. It was so nice spending time with her while I was home, and I just love how she is totally her own person. She’s not afraid to be 100% Jordi, 100% of the time–a lesson I think we could all learn from!
Also, she’s just so darn cute.
And wearing six-inch platform boots when these photos were taken.
Like I said, 100% Jordi, 100% of the time.