Last fall, I came across a wonderful risotto dish from fellow blogger Cottage Grove House. This Risotto with Sun Gold Tomato Sauce beckoned to me. I filed it away to be made in the future. And like so many great dishes that we all come across, it got temporarily forgotten. Until now.
I wanted to add a little something to this simple and tasty dish so I marinated some chicken breasts and did the slightest tweaking to the original recipe. It makes for a great casual dinner — the kind where it is casual and simple yet it still shows that you put in some effort for your dining companion! :-) Oh, and don’t let the long list of instructions scare you. There are several steps but nothing difficult.
Marinated Chicken Breasts with Cherry Tomato Risotto — Risotto modified from Cottage Grove House
- 2 Chicken Breasts. boneless and skinless
- 1 Tbs Balsamic Vinegar, plus more for garnish
- 1 tsp Fresh Basil, plus 2 sprigs
- 1 tsp Fresh Thyme, plus 1 sprig
- 1 Tbs Whole Grain Mustard
- 4 Shallots, finely chopped and divided
- 6 Garlic Cloves, finely chopped
- 6 cups Cherry Tomatoes, cut in half
- 1 ½ cup Risotto (Arborio Rice)
- ¼ cup Parmesan Cheese, grated
Place each chicken breast in a separate plastic ziplock bag, or between two sheets of plastic wrap. Pound out to 1/4 inch thick. Remove any fat off the chicken and place in a shallow dish (like a pie pan).
Put the balsamic vinegar, 2 Tbs olive oil, 1 tsp basil, 1 tsp thyme, mustard, and onion powder in a small bowl and whisk together. Pour marinade over the chicken, turning to coat. Place a plate over the dish (plastic wrap works too) and store the chicken in the refrigerator for a half an hour.
Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat, coat with cooking spray.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Place flour in a shallow dish and dredge chicken in the flour. Add chicken to the pan one at a time and sauté for 4 minutes on each side, or until done.
Remove from pan and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Place chicken in oven until risotto is done.
For the sauce, heat 2 Tbs oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
Add shallots, stirring often, until soft and translucent, 6-8 minutes. Add garlic, basil and thyme sprigs and cook stirring often, until fragrant.
Add tomatoes and vinegar. Cook, stirring occasionally, until tomatoes release their juices and a sauce forms, approximately 15 minutes.
Discard the basil and thyme sprigs. Add a sprinkling of salt to taste and set aside.
Next make the risotto. Heat oil in a dutch oven or heavy bottom pot over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook for two minutes until soft.
Add the risotto and stir for one minute making sure all of the grains are well coated.
Begin to add the stock ½ cup at a time, stirring frequently. Wait until each addition of stock is almost absorbed before adding the next ½ cup, stirring frequently to prevent sticking. (Reserve ¼ cup of stock to add at the end.) Add the wine ½ cup at a time, stirring frequently.
After approximately 25-30 minutes, when the risotto is tender but not soft, add the reserved stock, tomato sauce and Parmesan.
Remove the chicken from the oven.
Spoon risotto onto the middle of the plate and lay a chicken breast on top.
Drizzle with balsamic vinegar and sprinkle with additional parmesan.