Chicken Mediterranean with Bed of Savory Quinoa
INGREDIENTS
  • Cooking Time: 40 min
  • Servings: 4-6
  • Preparation Time: 30 min
  • For Chicken:
  • Chicken breast halves,(4) trimmed, cut to size and pounded slightly
  • Dijon Mustard
  • salt & Pepper
  • Mixed together @1 ½ C total:
  • Parmesan (kraft) and real romano both grated
  • Dired thyme 2 t
  • Salt & pepper
  • For Sauce:
  • One bulb fennel Trimmed, sliced thin & fronds saved for garnish
  • Two medium to large onions sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic peeled & halved
  • 1 t each Dried or fresh to taste: Thyme, rosemary, oregano
  • 2 T butter & 2 T olive oil
  • 1 Jar Italian/hot marinated green olives, red pepper and hot pepperonchinis, reserving 2 T juice
  • 1 lb grape tomatoes
  • 1 bundle Asparagus tips & middle pieces (2” cuts, save bottoms for soup another day!)
  • 1 can diced tomatoes with juice
  • 2 T capers
  • Fresh lemon to "squirt" & garnish!
  • For Quinoa:
  • 2 Cups quinoa
  • 4 Cups Chicken or veggie stock
  • 2 cloves garlic (either halve & remove when cooked) or mince & leave in!
  • 1 C parsley chopped
  • 4 scallions sliced whites and greens
  • 1 C arugula chopped (optional)
  • 1 Lemon zested & juiced
  • Salt & pepper
  • Toasted Pine nuts or other nuts if desired
DIRECTIONS
  1. Prepare Quinoa:
  2. Bring first three ingredients to a boil. Lower to LOW & simmer 15 to 20 min or until done & liquid is absorbed. Should be translucent & little “curl” visible. Gently “fluff” & fold in remaining ingredients. TASTE & adjust as needed!
  3. Prepare Chicken:
  4. Trim, halve each breast & pound slightly, salt & coarse pepper both sides. Spread Dijon on both sides coating fairly well. Dredge in the cheese mixture pat & coat well. Place slowly into fry pan using 2 T Butter & 2 T olive oil at medium high heat. You want hot enough to make the crust a golden brown do not burn!! Turn carefully and cook second side until golden reducing heat if needed. If chicken is not fully cooked thru you can finish in a 325 oven. Keep warm & set aside.
  5. Sauce:
  6. Saute first 3 ingredients and dried herbs med/low (can use fresh if available) in butter & OO until almost translucent. salt slightly to sweat it out. DO NOT BROWN. Add asparagus, cook @ seven minutes, lower heat if needed. Add cherry tomatoes, capers, olives and red pepper bits from jar & 2 T reserved juice (reserve pepperoncini as a garnish). Add diced tomatoes and cook until they are almost dissolved & cherry tomatoes are almost ready to “pop”. Taste & season accordingly. Add parmesan if desired. Serve over prepared quinoa. Top with Chicken & garnish with squirt of lemon, thin lemon slices (if desired) fronds & small pepperoncinis.
RECIPE BACKSTORY
I have always wanted to use fennel in a recipe! I love chicken cooked with the dijon/parmesan crust, so I created this recipe based on those two favorites of mine. My hubby & family went crazy for this! It sounds like a lot of ingredients but it goes together so easily and most of the ingredients you already have on hand. A GREAT way to impress company! If fennel isn't your thing try it with leeks another "stalk" type veggie! Omit the chicken & use veggie broth and you have a delicious vegetarian meal! I love Mediterranean style foods so I hope you love my contribution!! Enjoy!