I’m so excited to share a fresh, healthy, and fit chicken recipe for Day 3 of Chicken Week with you! Just to recap, Monday we made warm and hearty (and Ben-approved!) Chicken & Wild Rice Soup , then yesterday we brought take-out in-house with spicy-sweet Kung Pao Chicken Burgers (which, seriously – gobble-good.)
Today, we’re going delightfully fresh with Avocado, Mozzarella and Bruschetta Chicken, which couldn’t have come at a more perfect time. After waking up to howling winds and 4″ of snow on the ground, the bright colors and summery flavors of a sauteed chicken breast topped with creamy avocado, juicy tomatoes and basil, melty mozzarella cheese, and syrupy-sweet balsamic vinegar totally hit the spot, and temporarily distracted me from the swirling white wretchedness taking place out my window!
Avocado, Mozzarella & Bruschetta Chicken is simple, flavorful and ready in 15-20 minutes…AND it’s drizzled with reduced balsamic vinegar.
HOW YOU GONNA HATE ON THAT?!
While it may look fancy and like it takes a lot of time, this dish is really just a sauteed chicken breast topped with goodies then popped under the broiler for a few minutes. Simple enough to make on a weeknight, but yummy enough to make for your family and friends anytime. Plus it’s a recipe that can easily be scaled. Make enough for 1 or 10!
Start with the balsamic reduction that you see above (AHHH) which is so easy it’ll make your head spin. All you do is bring 1 cup balsamic vinegar to a boil then reduce the heat and simmer until it’s thickened and coats a spoon.
Like this! When you reduce balsamic vinegar it’s gets to be like a sweet syrup – you would never in a million years guess it started out as balsamic vinegar. I love to drizzle it on salads, berries, pizzas, and well, Avocado, Mozzarella and Bruschetta Chicken!
The vinegar takes about 20 minutes to reduce, so just set it aside when it’s done to cool slightly. (Oh, hi!)
Next get your chicken ready. Normally I would just instruct you to season then cook, etc, but a few people have asked me exactly how I saute a chicken breast, so here’s what I do from start to finish:
First, pound out your chicken breasts to a uniform thickness. If you don’t do this, one end will end up as chicken leather, while the other will be moist and delish. What a horrible combo.
I usually pop the chicken into a ziplock bag or lay it on my poultry-only cutting board and seal it up with Glad Press & Seal (I am absolutely obsessed with that stuff.) Next, take a mallet or rolling pin and give the chicken a good couple of whacks until it’s all the same thickness.
Next drizzle extra virgin olive oil on top and brush it on evenly, then season liberally with salt & pepper. Flip and do the same thing on the other side.
Time to get cookin’. Brush the inside of a skillet with olive oil (I just use what’s left on the brush) or spray with nonstick spray then heat to medium-high. I usually set mine to 6.5 out of 10. Add the chicken then cook for 4-5 minutes, or until the underside is golden brown. Flip then cook for another 4 minutes or until no longer pink in the center.
My no-fail way to make sure the chicken is done without cutting into it, is to press into the chicken with my finger. If you press and the chicken feels bouncy or raw, flip and cook for one more minute. If you can’t really press into the chicken at all, it’s done!
K! Now transfer the chicken to a nonstick-sprayed, foil-lined baking sheet.
Time to bust out the goodies! First up – Fresh Bruschetta Sauce. I picked this up at Trader Joe’s, but you could totally make your own. The combo of fresh tomatoes, basil and garlic in here is SO SUMMER that it makes me want to scream. Who knows, maybe I did!
Plus a sliced avocado.FYI – I peel my avocados, vs scooping the flesh out with a spoon. You dirty one less utensil, plus my inner type A get SO ANNOYED when the spoon leaves some of the flesh behind in the peel. I know.
Spoon about 2 Tablespoons bruschetta mixture on top then add 3 or 4 slices of avocado.
Next slice up some fresh mozzarella. Tip: Pop this baby into the freezer for 10-15 minutes to make it really easy to slice!
(don’t forget a wee piece for the chef!)
Add 1oz sliced mozzarella on top then broil until melted.
Top with the reduced balsamic vinegar then INHALE.
Ingredients 1 cup balsamic vinegar 4 chicken breasts, pounded to an even thickness extra virgin olive oil salt & pepper 1/2 cup pre-made bruschetta topping 1 avocado, sliced 4oz mozzarella cheese, sliced (or 1 cup shredded) baby spinach or pasta, for serving
Pour balsamic vinegar into a small saucepan then bring to a boil. Turn heat down to medium then simmer and reduce until vinegar is thick enough to coat a spoon, about 20 minutes. (Vinegar will continue to thicken while cooling.) Set aside to cool.
Place oven rack in top position then preheat broiler. Brush chicken breasts with extra virgin olive oil then season with salt and pepper on both sides. Brush a large skillet over medium-high heat with oil then add chicken breasts and cook for 4-5 minutes a side, or until no longer pink in the center.
Transfer chicken to a foil-lined, nonstick-sprayed baking sheet then top with 2 Tablespoons bruschetta mixture, 3-4 slices avocado, and 1 oz mozzarella each. Broil until cheese has melted then serve over spinach or cooked pasta, and drizzle with the balsamic vinegar reduction.
I placed my Avocado, Mozzarella and Bruschetta Chicken over a bed of baby spinach which was just divine. Angel hair pasta underneath would be super yummy too. Heck, you could place it on the floor and I’d still lick it clean!
That is to say, drizzle on some more of that balsamic reduction, and get to eatin’, people!