Parchment Chicken Caprese with Asparagus

 Parchment Wrapped Chicken Caprese with Asparagus pairs well with a Casear salad for an easy weeknight meal

Parchment Wrapped Chicken Caprese with Asparagus pairs well with a Casear salad for an easy weeknight meal.Parchment Wrapped Chicken Caprese

Have you ever wondered what your life would be like as an empty nester? I always imagined I would spend more time cooking.  Boy was  I wrong. On most weekdays, I still don’t want to  spend more than 30 minutes on meal prep. I  love good food, and can’t stop searching for more ideas to get  tasty food on the table PDQ. Today’s recipe is one of my new favorites!

Scrolling through my Facebook feed one night, a  McCormick Recipe caught my attention: Stuffed Chicken Caprese.  I made the recipe serveral times, but found the chicken too dry. Enter a new cooking method,   en papillote or cooking in parchment paper.  It made a HUGE difference. Not only was the chicken moist,  but clean-up was a breeze.  This low carb entree  is very light, only 300 calories. ( I serve it with a Casear salad and some French bread for a heartier meal .) Make this your go to recipe for getting a delicious meal on the table lickety split.

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Parchment Chicken Caprese with Aparagus

Parchment Chicken Caprese with Asparagus

Parchment Chicken Caprese with Asparagus is my go to recipe when I want  a delicious and equally nutritious meal on the table fast.

  • Author: Diane Boyd
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 4
  • Category: entree
  • Method: baking in parchment paper (en papillote)
  • Cuisine: French

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch asparagus spears
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 chicken cutlets
  • 4 tablespoons McCormick All Purpose Seasoning (Oregano, Basil, Garlic and Sea Salt)
  • 4 campari tomatoes, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic glaze
  • 2 ounces part skim mozzarella cheese, grated

Instructions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

  1. Cut four pieces of parchment paper  (13 inches by 14 inches). Fold paper in half.
  2. Divide asparagus between 4 parchment sheets; place on the fold. Drizzle each with olive oil ; sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.
  3.  Top each bunch of asparagus with a chicken cutlet. Season with all purpose seasoning.
  4. Add sliced tomato to the top of each cutlet and drizzle with balsamic glaze. Bring ends of parchment paper together and make small overalpping pleats all the way around to seal the edges completely. Make your last fold turn under.
  5. Bake for 30 mintues. Remove from oven. Open each pouch and top with mozarella cheese. Allow cheese to melt and serve immediately.

Notes

May use foil instead of parchment paper.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 chicken cutlet
  • Calories: 300
  • Sugar: 11 grams
  • Sodium: 280 mg
  • Fat: 7 grams
  • Saturated Fat: 3 grams
  • Trans Fat: 0 grams
  • Carbohydrates: 19 grams
  • Fiber: 5 grams
  • Protein: 38 grams
  • Cholesterol: 85 mg

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Ancho Chili Paste

Ancho Chili paste is a great way to add flavor and variety to foods with few calories.

Ancho Chili PasteI recently had the opportunity to delve into meal kit delivery service. Have you tried any of these? My order from Blue Apron was yummy and I especially loved this dish: Ancho Orange Chicken. IMHO it was the ancho chili paste responsible for the flavor (with few calories). This past weekend I recreated the entree for a dinner party. Again, it worked out beautifully, but only after I was able to procure a key ingredient: ancho chili paste. Who knew if would be so difficult to get my hands on?!

I finally had to resort to making my own. Today’s recipe is that chili paste!

Before I share the recipe, let me tell you why I adore this chili paste:  it has just enough sizzle, without being ‘all about the heat‘. (I’m a bit of a whimp when it comes to setting my mouth on fire!) The flavor is smokey  and  sweet with notes of coffee and fruit (i.e. dried plums or raisins.) Besides using this chili paste in the Ancho Orange Chicken recipe from  Blue Apron, I  will also use  it to  boost the flavor of  a myriad of foods including: salsas, marinades, dips, rice, sauces, tofu, chili, tacos, and beans. BTW it’s inexpensive to make, I made mine for less than one dollar.

For more information about the benefits of the fiery little vegetable see my post: Chili Peppers: Health Food or Hype?

Ancho Chili Paste

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Ancho Chili Paste

Ancho Chili Paste

Ancho Chili Paste lets you add flavor without adding calories.

  • Author: Diane Boyd
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 4 dried ancho chilis, stems and seeds removed
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • dash of pepper

Instructions

Pour water into a one quart pyrex measuring cut and microwave on high until water begins to boil. Tear dried peppers and place in a 2 cup pyrex measuring cup. Pour boiling water over peppers to cover and allow to sit 30 minutes or until softened. Add a bit of reserved liquid one tablespoon at a time to thin paste if necessary. Add cumin, garlic, salt, and pepper. Pulse to combine. Store in the refrigerator in a covered container for 5 days . May freeze in an ice cube tray for longer storage.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 0.7 grams
  • Calories: 0
  • Sugar: 0
  • Sodium: 75 mg
  • Fat: 0
  • Saturated Fat: 0
  • Trans Fat: 0
  • Carbohydrates: 0
  • Fiber: 0
  • Protein: 0
  • Cholesterol: 0

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