Friday, September 12, 2008

Italian Chicken with Couscous

Image Hosted by ImageShack.usSteve and I love olives...a lot...kalamatas are our favorites. I try to keep them on hand all the time and we either eat them out of the container or I cook with them. This is a great recipe for using kalamatas. You dont have to make couscous with it but I think it goes so well. I usually put a lot of the sauce on top of the cousous and it's so good like that. I even eat the couscous cold the next morning for breakfast. I know, it's weird but I really love it.

I find myself saying this do not need to follow this recipe exactly. I came up with this to use what I had on hand but I've substitued diced tomatoes and petite diced tomatoes when I don't have fresh. Sometimes I don't use capers. One thing you should keep in mind is that if the sauce is thick you may not need to add the cornstarch. If it's too watery from fresh tomatoes and you want it thicker then add a little or if you like it loose that's fine too. :-)

I tried a new technique with my camera. I shut off the flash and adjusted the lighting through the computer. I'm not sure if it's better or not. I'm new to this and I also have a new camera so any advice would be lovely!

Italian Chicken with Couscous


2-3 boneless skinless chicken breasts, halved
extra virgin olive oil
1-2 Tbsp unsalted butter
1 large onion, halved and thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 plum tomatoes, seeded and diced
¼ cup kalamata olives, pitted and chopped
1 Tbsp capers, drained
salt and pepper, to taste
¼ cup chardonnay or any dry white wine
1 can chicken broth
2 tsp cornstarch
¼ cup fresh basil, chiffonade
1 box Near East toasted pine nut couscous


Rinse chicken, pat dry and season with salt and pepper. In a large skillet heat 1 tbsp butter and a little oil over medium-high heat. Add chicken; cook for 4-5 minutes on each side or until brown. Remove from pan and keep warm on a plate tented with foil.

In same pan add remaining butter and oil (if needed), onion and garlic. Saute for about 2 minutes or until onions are soft. Add tomatoes and a little chicken broth while scraping browned bits from pan. Add olives, capers, salt and pepper to skillet. Let it come to a boil, reduce heat and cover pan. Let cook for about 3 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare couscous according to package directions and substitute chicken broth for water. (May be a little short on broth so add water if needed) Stir together wine and cornstarch; add to skillet. Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly. Add chicken to pan and any juices that accumulated in the dish. Stir in basil. Let cook for 2 minutes more.

Serve sauce over chicken and couscous.


Corinne said...

Mmm, that looks wonderful... olives are something i don't get much of since Daniel isn't fond of them... I wonder if this would make him eat them!

I have a surprise for you on my blog :)

Proud Italian Cook said...

Your food and your photo looks great! I always try to take photos in natural light,no flash of course, it seems to work best for me. I'm with you about kalamata's love them, and love to cook with them.

Lucy said...

Michele, that looks soooo good!! I just love olives and everything else in your chicken dish... a must try!!

When I first introduced my family to couscous, they all started laughing, thinking I made up that name... and to this day when it's on the table... all I hear is them calling out COUSCOUS, over & over ;-)

The Blonde Duck said...

What a wonderful tribute to your grandmother! Congrats to a fellow award winner.

Anonymous said...

Look on my "about me" page..there's a few humble tips on food photography :)
In the meanwhile, I think this dish looks very good and your nonna would be proud :)

Sophie said...

What a delicious chicken recipe. I looove olives too. I think I am obsessed. I pour olive juice AND olive oil on so many things. Plus, I add olives whenever I can get away with it too :).

Anonymous said...

This sounds GREAT! My husband and I LOVE olives too! :)