After a year and a half of our every Thursday meals for our friends, we have backed off to monthly (they now have gvmt help) and this was the first one since our trip to Pensacola, FL. To make it easier for both parties, I’m trying to use dishes that we make up ahead of time and they can bake at their suppertime.
For this meal, I decided on Salsa Verde Baked Chicken using the recipe from Kevin’s Closet Cooking blog (his pic above) and I pretty well followed his recipe, except for my prep of the chicken – steps 1-3 below. Plus I made one recipe for them and one for us. Click on the link for Kevin's original recipe and more great pics including step-by-steps.
Salsa Verde Baked Chicken – slightly adapted from Closet Cooking
2 cups salsa verde (from local Celito Lindo restaurant)
5 medium boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 teaspoon taco seasoning
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
2 cups monterey jack cheese, shredded (I used Mexican blend)
1. Make a basic brine of 8 cups water, 1/2 cup kosher salt, 1/4 cup honey, 5 cloves of peeled & smashed garlic, and 2 lemons sliced.
2. Brine the chicken for 3-4 hours.
3. Jaccard the breasts to tenderize.
4. Spread 1/2 cup salsa verde over the bottom of a baking dish before placing the chicken in a single layer and seasoning it with the taco seasoning.
5. Spread the cream cheese onto the chicken, pour the remaining salsa verde over top and sprinkle on the cheese.
6. Bake covered in a preheated 350F oven until the chicken is cooked through (160F internal), the cheese has melted and the sides are bubbling, about 25-35 minutes.
We didn't have a side dish so this is my plate with some pan sauce added in the second shot.
As expected from a Kevin recipe, it was a big hit with all of us – I’ve always enjoyed his baked chicken recipes and would definitely make this one again - makes your tongue want to slap your face delicious. In addition to the taste, it was very easy to make and even easier if the chicken is not brined. I was still a little hungry after eating just the breast and recalled we had some cheesy cauliflower in the fridge from a recent meal. I topped it with some of the pan sauce and nuked it for a delicious alternative to rice for a carb free meal.
Have a great day and thanks for stopping by Almost Heaven South.
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