While it may be a little hard to offer you a serving of this dish in person, I am not kidding when I tell you this recipe rocks. In her post, Mel talks about wanting to dream about this dinner forever. I am with her! The ingredients themselves seem fairly basic, something that would be the makings of your standard weeknight meal. I am not sure if it is one ingredient that stands out or if it is the combination of these ingredients together, but the finished dish is hands down one of the best dinners we have made (I say we because my husband actually made this dish, although I have to get some credit as I picked out the recipe).
My take on this one: Just make it. Please! And call me when you do, as I'll be over for supper as soon as I get off work :)
Cheesy Basil Stuffed Chicken Breasts
Adapted from Mel's Kitchen Cafe and from Cook’s Country Cookbook: Rediscovering America’s Home Cooking
1 cup part-skim shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup minced basil, divided
2 Tbsp. heavy cream
1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
3 garlic cloves, minced
salt & pepper
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (on the thicker side in order to stuff them)
3 Tbsp. lowfat mayonnaise
1 cup whole wheat Panko bread crumbs
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. In a medium bowl, combine the shredded cheese, 2 tablespoons of the minced basil, cream, lemon juice, 2 teaspoons minced garlic, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
Cut a pocket in the thickest part of the chicken breast. Stuff with cheese mixture and seal using a toothpick to help close the slit if necessary. Transfer the stuffed breasts to a 9x13-inch pan and spread the tops evenly with mayonnaise.
In a medium bowl, combine the bread crumbs, remaining garlic, remaining basil, and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Sprinkle the bread crumb mixture over the chicken breasts, pressing lightly to adhere.
Toss the tomatoes with the remaining tablespoon of olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and pepper to taste. Arrange the tomatoes in the baking dish in and around the chicken. Bake until the crumbs are golden brown and the chicken is cooked through (registering 165 degrees on an instant read thermometer), about 25 minutes. Serve immediately.