Saturday, March 5, 2011

balsamic chicken with pesto gravy and bitter greens

Hall of Fame! This dish is exceptional. Absolutely without a doubt an instant favorite. The flavors are strong and rich. They reach out and grab you. Everyone in the family LOVED every bite. My husband and I enjoyed the chicken and gravy over spinach whereas the kiddos enjoyed it over whole grain pasta. Nobody wanted the meal to end. The kids grabbed bread at the end of the meal to soak up the extra gravy. If you decide not to serve it over greens (or under them) it would be great over pasta, mashed potatoes or rice.

balsamic chicken with pesto gravy and bitter greens (cookbook: Just In Time by Rachael Ray)
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
4 tablespoons EVOO (extra-virgin olive oil)
salt and black pepper
4 small boneless, skinless chicken breasts
about 6 cups arugula, thoroughly washed and dried (my grocery store never has arugula so I used spinach)
juice of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups chicken stock
1/3 cups heavy cream or half and half
1/4 cup store-bought pesto
parmigiano-reggiano shavings, made with a vegetable peeler

In a bowl, combine the vinegar, 2 tablespoons of the EVOO and salt and pepper to taste. Ad the chicken and turn to coat.
Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat with 1 tablespoon of the EVOO. Add the chicken and cook for 5 minutes on each side.
While the chicken is cooking, in a large bowl combine the arugula, lemon juice, a healthy drizzle of EVOO and salt and pepper.
Remove the chicken to a cutting board. Add the butter to the skillet and when it has melted, add the flour and cook for a minute or so. Whisk in the chicken stock and cream and bring up to a simmer to thicken. Remove from the heat and stir in the pesto.
Slice the chicken and arrange on dinner plates. Pour the pesto gravy over the chicken, then top with the arugula and cheese shavings.


  1. I came over by way of Taste and Tell's Saturdays with Rachael Ray. This dish looks AWESOME. Pesto gravy -- HELLO LOVER! :)

  2. Saw you over on Taste and Tell! I LOVE anything with pesto!

  3. You've convinced me! Thanks for participating in Saturdays with Rachael Ray!

  4. I just came back last night from two weeks out west (sorry we didn't make it to was a whirl wind!), and wanted a recipe that was easy enough (something I've made before) but felt gourmet...and I knew this would be it. I had nothing left at home, not even chicken...but excepting for the pesto these are standard ingredients I have I did a big grocery trip to reload my frig, and am SO looking forward to cooking again tonight. Thanks (once again) for making coming home easy.