Basil pesto chicken with spinach and tomatoes reminds me of an afternoon in Cinque Terra.

Updated: Jul 23


I always top this dish with a little extra cheese.

By SARA VANDEN BERGE

I fell in love with basil pesto while enjoying a big bowl of pasta on a warm afternoon in Italy’s coastal area of Cinque Terra several years ago.

That was our first trip to Europe and I have never forgotten the experience of enjoying that wonderful meal on the ocean while sipping a delicious Italian wine.

Since then, any time I’m at an Italian restaurant and see basil pesto on the menu, I order it.

The classic pesto is a blend of fresh basil leaves, pine nuts, garlic, parmesan cheese, salt and pepper and a really good olive oil.

It’s absolutely delicious.

So I was thrilled when my oldest son shared this easy and relatively healthy recipe for basil pesto chicken with me.

I’m not sure where he got it (probably Pinterest), but it has turned into a family favorite.

I hope you enjoy it as much as we do.

This is the pesto I normally use and you can easily find it at HEB.

WHAT’S IN IT

• Chicken breasts

• Basil pesto (I use Buitoni)

• Fresh spinach

• Sliced tomatoes

• Mozzarella cheese

HOW TO MAKE IT

Lay the number of chicken breasts you want to cook inside a shallow baking dish sprayed with olive oil.

Salt and pepper to your liking, then spread the pesto on top of the chicken. Top with sliced tomatoes and handfuls of baby spinach.

Cook at 350 degrees uncovered for about 45 minutes or until chicken is done. (If the spinach appears to be browning too much, cover with foil.)

Top with mozzarella cheese and place the chicken back in the oven until the cheese is melted and slightly brown.

Wash it down with a great wine!

Cheers!

Drop me a line and let me know what you think.

Beneath the Surface News. sara@beneaththesurfacenews.com