Thursday, May 10, 2012

Spinach artichoke crusted chicken

In the Recipes I'm Trying This Week blog post earlier this week I mentioned trying the artichoke crusted chicken from the Sugar Laws website. Just reading the website I decided I was going to use the idea as a basis and make my own recipe up. I'm already thinking about the veggie/cheese mixture added to precooked chicken and pasta then baked. Also, I think this could be done easily in the slow cooker, but you won't get the same browning on the chicken and cheese unless you're lucky enough to own the AMAZING Cuisinart Multicooker from William Sonoma. This recipe is easily customizable. I'm also thinking it would be good with a caprese style mixture (mozzarella, basil, and sun dried tomatoes). Here's what I did for this chicken...

1/4 red onion diced
3 cloves garlic minced
3 cu fresh spinach leaves
13.75oz canned artichokes drained and chopped
fresh black pepper
4 boneless skinless chicken breast pounded flat
1/2cu mayonnaise
1cu shredded cheese (I used goat's milk mozzarella)

1. Preheat oven to 425* and oil a baking pan. Saute garlic and red onion in about a tablespoon of heated olive oil a few minutes until the onion is translucent. You'll know the oil is ready for the aromatics if a small drop of water dripped into the pan immediately sizzles. Add in the spinach and artichokes. Cook until spinach has wilted down and place into a large bowl. This will make about two cups of a veggie mix.

2. Add a little more oil into the skillet and cook the chicken on each side for 4-5 minutes. Don't touch the chicken. You will know it's ready to flip when it whitens around the edge. It should have some nice browning when flipped. Place the chicken into the prepared pan.

3. Into the bowl of veggies add the mayo and cheese mixing well. Spread this mixture all over the tops of the chicken in the pan and place into the oven uncovered. Let cook for 15-20min. Turn after about 10 minutes for even browning. The chicken juices should run clear while the top is brown and bubbling. Let rest a few minutes before serving.

The aromatics should look like this when you add in the veggies.

Saute until the spinach is wilted down.

The bottom piece of chicken is white around the edges. That's how you know it's time to flip it over so you get that nice browning like the top piece of chicken. Don't bother wiping out the pan between veggies and chicken. No worries for cross contamination and it adds extra flavor!

Place the browned chicken into the pan. I had to cook my chicken in two batches.

This is what the top of your chicken should look like when done. So tasty!!

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