Spinach and Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken Breasts & Mashed Turnips

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Life has been crazy lately. Work has blown up, and so creative meals have lately become slim in my home. BUT, this past Saturday I DID put together a recipe and shopping list completely comprised of recipes from my South Beach Cookbook.

The one I made last night was easily one of the most tasty and succulent chicken recipes I've ever made. Sooo juicy and oozing melted goat cheese. YUMM.

Spinach and Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken Breasts

Here's what I used:

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
4 oz goat cheese
1/2 lb. fresh spinach, stems removed
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 tbsp olive oil

Here's what I did:

Preheated oven to 400 degrees.

First I rinsed my chicken breasts and patted them dry. Then I cut a pocket into the side of each breast with a sharp paring knife, 1" from the back and sides of breast, but deep enough to fit my filling. I seasoned the inside and outside (both sides) with salt and pepper.

Next, I added 2 tbsp of olive oil into a skillet, and added my garlic. I let the garlic cook for about a minute on medium heat, until fragrant, and then added the spinach leaves. I allowed the leaves to wilt and turn dark, about 6-8 minutes, stirring regularly to allow all leaves to heat up.

Once my spinach was wilted, I brought my skillet over to the counter and divided it into two portions. Using my kitchen tongs, I added 1/2 of the spinach to each chicken breast pocket. Then I cut the goat cheese into several 1/8" or so slices, and added that on top of the spinach in the pocket. Finally, I pressed the top of the pocket down firmly over the filling to meld the ingredients together.

Reusing the same skillet as before, I added the remaining 2 tbsp of olive oil on medium-high heat. I carefully added the chicken breasts to the skillet, careful to keep ingredients together in the chicken. Cooked the chicken for 3 minutes per side, and then placed them on a foil-lined cookie sheet. Then placed the sheet in the oven for 8-10 minutes.

If you like to use a thermometer, the chicken breast should register at about 160 degrees. Allowing it to rest outside of the oven, it will still cook a few more minutes, and the juices will remain in the bird.

Mashed Turnips

Here's what I used:

3 turnips, skinned and cubed
1/4 cup mexican cheese blend
1/4 cup fat free (or regular) sour cream
S, P & Garlic Powder

Here's what I did:

Added cubed turnips to large pot of boiling water. Allowed to cook until fork tender, about 15 minutes or so. Drained and set back on stove top to evaporate any remaining water off turnip cubes. Added cheese, sour cream and seasonings and then mashed liberally with a potato masher. Alternately, you could mash with the bottom of a drinking glass or use a food processor to reach desired consistency. I like a slightly chunky texture, so I did about 15-20 good mashes, and then allowed more liquid to cook off. After about 10 minutes on low heat, most of the turnip liquid had cooked off.

I didn't tell my husband what this was. I think he assumed lumpy potatoes. I KNEW if I told him they were turnips he wouldn't eat them!! So instead he said "what is this? its good!" I laughed and told him turnips. He didn't even know what they were - but that would have been enough for him to NOT eat them.

Review wise, this one was strong. We both commented that the moisture in the chicken easily rivalled a great restaurant, and definitely beat most. There is such a fear of undercooking chicken that it is often overcooked, stringy and dry. Not these bird boobs. They were awesome. And the goat cheese oozed out with the delicately garlic flavored fresh spinach. Very, very good.


City 2 Burb, and all that it entails... Copyright © 2009 Designed by Ipietoon Blogger Template for Bie Blogger Template Vector by DaPino