The story goes something like this. Every Summer Wednesday, we have a farmer’s market across from the building I work. I try to go there almost every Wednesday, to pick up freshly baked breads and herbs. I especially look for basil. Love those fresh, huge basil plants. I’ve tried so many times to plant Basil in my back yard- in the ground and in the pot. But those squirrels. They seem to be liking my basil. I plant today and tomorrow it’s gone. So I’ve stopped planting basil and since I love to use it in salads, I buy them. Well, I learned a trick about the farmer’s market. They start at 9 am. They close down at 2. So if I go after 1 pm, bingo. I am in for a big saving. Basil plants are normally $2.50 per plant. At 1, they give away 2 for $3! Now that’s a bargain. Last Wednesday, I was a bit late. Got there at around 1.30. no one had basil plant left. Finally a farmer girl offered me to pick the leftover basil leaves from the huge box that they use to put their plants. I was so glad as it was for free! I picked up as many basil leaves as I could possibly find and guess what, I got a bagful of them. And no, I am not going to do this every week! I will go at 1 yes, to get the bargain though for sure.
So I brought the basil home, right away made pesto and in the weekend, had this wonderful chicken dinner.
Here’s how I made it.
Pesto Stuffed Chicken with Rosemary Potatoes
1 cup Basil Pesto(2-3 cups loosely packed basil leaves, 6-9 cloves garlic, 1 hand ful walnuts, ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese, 1 cup or so extra virgin olive oil- give them a zip in a food processor. Store in an airtight jar in a refrigerator for about 2 weeks.)
4 small boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2-3 tbsp Italian seasoning
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp freshly chopped rosemary
Salt and pepper as needed
1 lb baby red potatoes
Place chicken breasts in between 2 plastic sheets, smooth side down and with a mallet, pound them as thin as possible.
Spread both sides of the breast with salt, pepper and italian seasoning as required.
Place all chicken breast on each other, overlapping slightly so that you can have about 8” large chicken breast circle.
Spread pesto all over it.
Roll it up tightly.
Bake it hot oven till chicken is done.
In the mean time, microwave baby potatoes for about 3 minutes, toss with olive oil, salt, pepper and chopped rosemary.
Spread the potatoes on a baking tray and bake in hot oven with chicken(at about 400° F.) until the potatoes are golden brown.
Serve with salad or your choice of steamed vegetables.