The protein of choice in our home is more often than not chicken breasts. Here in the UK, they are relatively in-expensive when compared to the red meats, and I find they provide a beautiful blank canvas for just about any other favour you want to put with them.
Because there are only two of us to feed I usually buy free-range organic chicken when I can, and corn fed RSCA approved if I can find it. I want to support a more humane method of chicken production as much as I am able to.
It breaks my heart whenever I think of any animal, destined for our plate or not . . . being mistreated or treated in any inhumane way and I strongly believe that one day we will all be held accountable for how we treated these precious gifts we have been given.
Meat was given to man for eating . . . but I believe it is a gift which comes with a responsibility.
This recipe today is a fabulous way of cooking boneless, skinless chicken breasts. I am not sure how it works, but the chicken ends up very tender and delicious.
It is so easy to destroy chicken breasts by over-cooking them. Anyone who has eaten an overcooked, dried out, tough chicken breast knows exactly what I am talking about.
I don’t understand how that happens . . . especially when they are one of the simplest and easiest things to cook.
Bone and skin definitely add flavour to meat, and also help to prevent it from drying out . . . in the case of boneless, skinless chicken breasts, you don’t have those luxuries to rely upon.
Careful timing and the addition of layers of flavour are your friend. In this dish the flavour comes from a tasty layering of textures and flavours . . . first the chicken, then a layer of cheese . . . I used strong cheddar, but you could also use mozzarella or Swiss, or even Jack. (Pepper jack would be great!) On top of that goes sour cream which has been stirred together with some herbs and seasonings and Parmesan cheese. Then finally an additional sprinkle of Parmesan . . .
This chicken always comes out tender, delicious and filled with flavour. You could use Italian Herb & Garlic seasoning rather then the herbs I have suggested if you wish. You could switch the herbs over to Tex Mex flavours with chili powder, cumin, coriander . . . and a splash of hot sauce. Its a very forgiving and delicious entree!
Author: Marie Rayner
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Sour Cream Chicken
Not sure how it works, but this chicken ends up deliciously tender and filled with flavour. Simply scrumptious.
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast fillets
- 4 slices of cheese (you can use mozzarella, cheddar, Swiss, etc.)
- 120g sour cream (1 cup)
- 135g grated Parmesan cheese, divided (3/4 cup)
- 1 TBS cornflour (cornstarch)
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1/2 tsp each salt and black pepper
- chopped parsley to garnish
- Preheat the oven to 190*C/375*F/gas mark 5. Butter a rectangular baking dish.
- Whisk together the sour cream. 90g of Parmesan (1/2 cup), cornflour, and all of the spices and seasonings. Lay your chicken pieces, presentation side up in the baking dish in a single layer. Top each with a slice of cheese and then smother with the sour cream mixture. Sprinkle the remaining Parmesan over top evenly.
- Bake in the preheated oven for approximately 1 hour, or until golden brown and the chicken juices run clear. Sprinkle with some chopped parsley to serve.
I served it simply with jacket potatoes that I scrubbed and popped into the oven to bake along side of the chicken, and a mixed salad. How do you do your jacket potatoes? I simply wash, dry, prick a few times with a fork and then throw them into the hot oven, right onto the oven racks. The skins always come out beautifully crisp. I love them!