Spinach finds solace in Chicken --

by Naila Sheikh


It surely has been a while since I have posted a recipe on my Blog. Maybe it has to do with the decrease of my inspired creativity or maybe just because I am pretty much overwhelmed with the kids and their needs and 'time' is really the culprit of it all - nevertheless, it feels good to be back and to be contributing to the world (to YOU) out there whom I reach via this platform and share the little joys of my life, albeit the simplest whip ups in the kitchen I prepare and oh so lovingly serve. :)

I strive to keep my creativity alive by merely cherishing God's beautiful creations around me. I think the greatest artists amongst us and before us, must have been inspired by their surroundings and their cathartic moments of peacefulness and insight. The kind of insight that is deeply rooted to one's soul and is inescapable in the process of creativity. I find that rather fascinating. Whether it is the mom who prepares dinner, or the chef who embellishes his plates with a 5 star quality; they are serving mankind with love and thus, their service to household or luxurious dine-in, should not be taken for granted nor seen as a mundane task. They are, creators - dare I say, artists? 

Tonight's dinner started with the unwrapping of chicken breast fillets and the idea of creating lifeless meat into an appealing meal. Alas! Recipe follows below:

 

STUFFED SPINACH CHICKEN BREAST served with whole grain Shell Pasta.

Ingredients:

- 3 to 4 Chicken Breast Fillets: thawed.

- Green Giants Organic Frozen Spinach: 1 pack

- Shell Pasta or any Pasta you prefer.

- Homemade or store bought alfredo sauce - quarter cup.

- Half an onion, sliced.

- 2 roma tomatoes - thinly sliced.

- Half a cup Prego Sauce

- 2 garlic cloves - crushed.

- 2 tbs paprika powder

- t tbs red chili powder (laal mirch)

- Half tsp turmeric powder (haldi)

- Shan's Achar Pickle Masala - 2 tbs

- Feta Cheese / Ricotta Cheese / Shredded Mexican Cheese OPTIONAL.

- The Laughing Cow - Mozzarella Sun-dried Tomato Flavor - one triangle needed.

- 1 egg beaten

- Italian Breadcrumbs - store bought.

Directions:

- Pour the sliced onions in a drizzle of heated olive oil. Let is simmer until onions are translucent. - Add Shan's Achar Pickle Masala, the 2 crushed garlic cloves and stir fry until it all mixes well. Mix in your sliced tomatoes and stir-fry further for a minute or two adding turmeric, red chili powder and paprika powder to this Tarqa mixture.

- Set on medium heat, once the dryness and absorption of oil & masalas appears, you pour in Prego Sauce to let it further simmer. 

- Add to this your block of spinach and mix well until it breaks. Put a lid on low heat and move on to boil your pasta al dente as well as butterfly your chicken breast fillets. {* 'Butterfly' meaning cutting one side of the chicken fillets, but not all the way so that the wings lay flat on your cutting board, ready to be stuffed} - To this, pick your 'Laughing Cow' Mozzarella triangle and slowly layer it onto your chicken butterfly wings. 

- Your spinach should be ready to be stuffed. Grab a tablespoon of your spinach filling and cover one wing, the other wing you can use to add your favorite cheese(s) to. Now close it tightly; you can poke in a toothpick if you want, but you'll be frying these fillets so the toothpick will have to remove eventually. But before that, we'll have to brush the outer skin with the beaten egg which serves as glue to the breadcrumbs we'll coat on with our bare hands.

- Drizzle some olive oil (or butter) in your frying pan and drop the fillets on low heat with lid on. Let is sit for a while - I'd say 10-15 min. each side. I let it cook thoroughly until it sizzles. In the meanwhile, drain your pasta and mix it lightly in alfredo pasta sauce. You can add herbs - I like cilantro. 

- As for your fillets; when they're done on both sides, given the thickness of the fillets, I will make sure to transfer the fillets on foil and put it in my toaster oven for another 15 minutes on BROIL mode and high temp. This way the chicken is moist and fully cooked to be devoured and I am happily satisfied with the end result.

Serve on top of pasta or aside, just the way you prefer. Viola! Stuffed Spinach Chicken Breast ready!

Bon Appetite!

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