Saturday, March 24, 2012

4 Day Challenge: Day Two

Sorry for the delay but it was Jake's birthday week, so as you can imagine celebrations were in order... for what felt like every night!

The 4 Day Challenge ended up being more like a 3 Day Challenge which was fine because Jake had a work happy hour on Wednesday night and that is the same day our community group meets, so needless to say time was tight.  Anyway, I'm not worried about it, I gave it an honest effort and I think that's what matters.

Tuesday's dinner (aka Day Two) from was OK.  The chicken was a little dry which was totally on me... I didn't realize toaster ovens cook hotter than the oven.  Lesson learned.  I will say however that the squash side was delicious and definitely something I'll make again.  Check it out.

Panko Crusted Chicken Stuffed with Ricotta, Spinach, Tomatoes, & Basil: 

  • 1 cup of low fat ricotta cheese
  • Small handful of baby spinach, chopped
  • Small handful of grape tomatoes, diced (remove the seeds if possible)
  • 2 tbsp Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • Sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste
  • Dash of oregano
  • 2 chicken breasts
  • Italian seasoned panko crumbs
  • 2 tsp olive oil
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
2. Combine the ricotta, spinach, tomatoes, Parmesan cheese, basil, garlic, sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste. Mix until thoroughly combined.
3. Rinse the chicken breasts then cut a long horizontal slit along the center of the thin long edge of the chicken breast, nearly through to the other side. Fill the cavity of the chicken breast with the ricotta mixture. Season each side of the chicken with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste. Carefully dip the chicken breasts in the panko crumbs until both sides are evenly covered. Close the slit together with toothpicks.
4. Heat the olive oil in an OVEN PROOF skillet on the stove over medium high heat. Once the pan is hot, place the chicken in the skillet and cook for 3-4 minutes or until the chicken is golden brown, flip the chicken over and place the skillet into the oven. Cook for 20 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through. Let the meat rest for 5 minutes before slicing.
I followed this recipe for the side but replaced the zucchini with a squash and left out the pine nuts.  d.e.l.i.c.i.o.u.s.

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