Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Lemon Basil Chicken

Lemon Basil Chicken on Linguini with Steamed Broccoli

oooohhhh..this recipe is SO good! and easy! i will demonstrate the recipe for two so double it if you are feeding a family. also - i forgot my digital camera at work so all the pictures you see today are from my cell phone (not bad actually) anyway, if you like lemon and basil - you will love this recipe - in the words of Avis from Masterchef.."it'll make your tongue slap your brain"
first take one boneless skinless chicken breast and cut it in half butterfly style so you have two thin chicken breasts - then put between plastic wrap and pound slightly to get an even thickness - don't go crazy thin, just even it out (plus it makes for larger breasts! 'that's what she said!' sorry i couldn't resist)
next place the chicken into a ziplock bag and add 2 tablespoons EVOO - i used my very own homemade basil olive oil :) then add the lemon zest of one lemon the juice of one lemon 3 garlic cloves minced and about a handful of chopped basil and a little pepper close the bag coat the chicken and put in the fridge for now.
this is a picture of my homegrown basil - and this didn't even make a dent in the amount i have when i cut it - so if anyone wants fresh basil - come to me, the Basil Babe! LOL
Next - prepare some ingredients. peel 1/2 a lemon and juice 1/2 the lemon. cut 3 garlic cloves, chop about 1 to 1 1/2 cups of fresh basil, start a pot of salted water to boil for pasta, measure a cup of chicken broth, set out about 4-5 tablespoons of cream cheese , 3 tablespoons butter (optional) salt and pepper to taste.
put a skillet on medium high heat
cut broccoli put in pot and season and add 1/2 cup of water set aside -do not turn on broccoli until i say so! just have it ready.
now we're ready to get cookin! pull the chicken out of the fridge - you can either put the chicken on a plate or wait and tranfer straight form the bag to the skillet with tongs or a fork.
put 2 tablespoons EVOO in skillet - again i used my basil olive oil
then add 2 cloves chopped garlic and saute until it turns golden - but not brown - now remove the garlic pieces.
Now saute chicken for about 30 seconds on each side and remove from pan. set aside.
throw in your linguini!
now for the lemon basil sauce - i kinda just made this up and it turned out DELISH! very lemony though - so if you want more subtle lemon flavor omit the lemon peel.
to the skillet you just sauteed your chicken in, add in chicken broth, butter, lemon peel, 1 chopped garlic clove, and 1/2 the basil - bring to a boil for about 3 minutes.
a snap shot of what things will look like mid-process - remember the broccoli is NOT on yet.
now bring the heat down to medium and add lemon juice and cream cheese - stir until most of the cream cheese is melted and add the chicken back into the skillet for about 10 minutes (since the chicken is thin it will be cooked through)
check noodles and set aside if they are done - drizzle a little evoo on them to keep them from sticking
START THE BROCCOLI - once you see steam or hear the water boiling wait two minutes then turn off the heat and do not open the lid.
now the sauce will have thickened up - now stir in the rest of the basil
plate up and enjoy! be sure to use the sauce on the noodles!