A Little More Each Day

One working mama learning to run & to maintain my 100+ pound weight loss!

Italian tomato braised chicken

on January 16, 2014

This started out as a lightened up Chicken Parm, but since I was feeling to lazy to deal with any kind of breading on this particular night, it ended up as more of a Italian braised chicken.

To start with, I popped a container of grape tomatoes and 6-8 mini sweet peppers chopped into chunks into a baking a dish and roasted them in the oven at 350 F for about 20 minutes while I was putting everything else together. I like the extra layer of flavor you get from the roasted veggies. Be sure to coat them with cooking spray or a little olive oil.

After that gets started, sear two chicken breasts over medium heat in a large saucepan. You want to get a nice brown crust, but you don’t need to cook them through. Let them cook for about 5 minutes on each side. When the chicken releases easily without sticking, you’ve got a good crust.

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This step does a couple of things. First, you get an extra layer of caramelization and flavor on the chicken breasts themselves. Second, those chicken breasts leave behind a lovely layer of flavor on the bottom of the pan that adds a little oomph to the tomato sauce we’re making next. Remove those chicken breasts to the baking dish. I covered the chicken breasts at this point with a couple of handfuls of fresh basil.

Add one chopped onion and cook over medium heat until they’ re translucent. You’ll notice that they pick up some of the brown chicken goodness from the pan. After they’re translucent, add 3-4 cloves of garlic and a tablespoon of Italian seasoning. Add a couple of tablespoons of tomato paste and stir around to let everything cook for another couple of minutes. Add one 28 ounce and one 14.5 ounce can of tomatoes (I used whole tomatoes this time, but you can also use diced or puree). Stir to lift up the good bits from the bottom of the pan and let everything simmer together for 15 minutes.

Remove the roasted tomatoes and peppers from the oven and add half of them to your tomato sauce. Pour the other half over the chicken breasts. I pureed the sauce with my immersion blender. You could also just break it all up with a potato masher or put it in a countertop blender/food processor.

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Pour the sauce over your chicken breasts, top with some shredded mozzarella and pop the whole thing in the oven (350 F) for 20-30 minutes until it has cooked through.

You could also skip the homemade sauce and use your favorite bottled sauce. We served this chicken with pasta (for hubs)/spaghetti squash (for me) and an extra dollop of the tomato sauce. The chicken was really moist and we got that nice mix of chicken/cheese/tomato that we were looking for with Chicken Parm. We’ll keep this one in our rotation! Even better, I have leftover sauce to use with other things later this week.

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My immersion blender is one of my favorite kitchen gadgets. What’s your favorite kitchen tool?

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3 responses to “Italian tomato braised chicken

  1. Lauren says:

    Sounds delicious! My favorite kitchen gadget is the crock-pot because I don’t have to do much other than put food in it and wait :0) lol!

  2. […] recipe from the “Keepers” cookbook that I got over Christmas. We also really liked the Italian tomato-braised chicken that we had a few weeks ago, so that will stay in rotation. I have high hopes for the buffalo […]

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