We love chicken in this house. I think that the thigh meat is my favourite, as it is so moist and succulent . . but I am really fond of the breast meat as well. It's so very versatile and is a very palatable canvas to paint on with a variety of flavours.
Cooking them can be really tricky however. They are incredibly lean, which makes them the dieter's dream . . . however that very positive quality also means that you have to be really careful not to over cook them. There is nothing more blah than an over cooked, dried out . . . chicken breast. On their own they don't have a lot of flavour any way . . . so if you cook the life out of them, you might as well be eating cardboard.
With correct timing and little tricks like leaving the skin on can make the world of difference however. You don't have to eat the skin, but it does help to prevent them from drying out, and in this case, helps to hold in a delicious creamy cheese filling, which not only flavours the chicken meat, but also helps to keep it moist.
Just look at how moist and tender that chicken is. Beautiful. Stuffed with cheese and baked on top of a pile of super thin roasted slices of potato, all crisp on the edges and golden brown . . . with a side of pan roasted cherry tomatoes, this is a meal that pleases on many levels . . .
Crisp skinned, tender juicy chicken flavoured with herby cheese . . . so succulent . . . roasted crisp potato slices . . . and melting tomatoes. An almost holy trinity of beautiful flavours and textures which is sure to become a firm and much requested favourite amongst your family members. Simple, easy and oh-so-tasty!
*Cheese Stuffed Chicken with Roasted Potatoes and Cherry Tomatoes*
You will want chicken breasts with the skin on for this simple one pan supper. Delicious, easy and there's not a lot of washing up at the end of it.
4 skin on Chicken breasts
3 large potatoes, washed, dried, peel or not as desired
3 TBS olive oil
300g cherry tomatoes on the vine (about 3/4 of a pound)
1 packet of herby creamy cheese (I like the Boursin, garlic and herb)
Preheat the oven to 220*C/425*F/ gas mark 7.
Line a deep roasting tin with some baking parchment. Cut the potatoes into thin slices. Lay them out on the baking paper. Drizzle with the 2 TBS of the olive oil. (If you can get the lemon flavoured olive oil, it's really nice in this). Season with some sea salt and cracked black pepper. Toss together and spread out again and then roast them in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes.
While the potatoes are roasting, loosen the skin on the chicken breasts, without removing it. You want to create a nice pocket, with the skin completely attached on one side. Divide the creamy cheese between each breast, tucking it in under the skin and replacing the skin firmly over top of it to cover. Brush with the remaining olive oil and season lightly with some salt and black pepper. Heat a large nonstick skillet. Brown the chicken breasts in the skillet, skin side down first, cooking for five minutes per side, until golden brown on both sides.
Reduce the oven temperature to 180*C/350*F/ gas mark 4. Remove the baking tray from the oven and place the chicken over top of the potatoes. Place the tomatoes along side and roast for a further 10 to 12 minutes, until the potatoes are tender and crispy brown, the chicken is cooked through and the tomatoes are meltingly juicy and tender.
To serve divide the potatoes equally amongst four heated dinner plates. Top each portion with a piece of chicken and 1/4 of the roasted tomatoes. Serve hot.