Elle’s Baked Chicken with Capsicum & Potatoes

Here’s a first for What You Having For Your Tea readers. A guest blogger! My good friend Elle who also writes the fabulous blog Product Placement and I worked together about 7 years ago back in the UK. Unknowingly to us we were to conceive the title of this blog. Each night we would ask each other without fail, “What you having for your tea?” So grew a “catchphrase” which in turn led me to the title of my blog. So, only fittingly, an exception was made and Elle was allowed to post one of her favourite recipes on the site. A real trip down pine nut memory lane…

Once, during one of those group conversations that can only happen at the tail-end of a tedious day in the office, the subject turned to ‘desert island food’. Someone (the author of this esteemed blog, no less) suggested potatoes, due to their versatility. A well-thought-out choice – unlike mine, which was pine nuts.

‘More of a garnish, surely?’ my colleagues jeered. But I stood my ground, and it’s because of this that, years later, I am still – not unfairly – known as a lover of pine nuts. This recipe manages to squeeze them in twice, once in the pesto and once as a garnish. It also has a bit of spiciness and lots of Mediterranean flavours. Enjoy. Although maybe don’t rely on it in any survival situation.

About 16 new potatoes
3 capsicum (red, yellow, green)
2 chicken breasts, skin off
6 rashers smoked bacon
Large handful olives, chopped
1 small buffalo mozzarella
4 tablespoons crème fraiche
2 tablespoons red pesto
Large handful pine nuts
Chilli oil

Preheat your oven to 200C. Cut half way into each chicken breast and stuff with broken-off bits of the mozzarella and the olives. Then wrap each breast in three rashers of bacon and secure with cocktail sticks. Put them in a large roasting tray.

Even out the size of the new potatoes by cutting any big ones in half, add to the tray, scattering them around the chicken parcels. Drizzle the lot with chilli oil, shaking the tray about to make sure it’s all coated. Season with salt and pepper.

Bake for about 20 minutes. Meanwhile, cut the peppers into bite-size chunks and then add them to the tray and cook for another 20 minutes, shaking the tin about occasionally to make sure everything’s cooking evenly.

In a small saucepan, combine the crème fraiche and pesto and heat gently. In another pan, dry roast the pine nuts until golden.

Place the chicken (cocktail sticks removed!) on a bed of the chilli-roasted peppers and potatoes. Pour over the crème fraiche sauce, then sprinkle with the toasted pine nuts.

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