A veritable cornucopia of fresh vegetables in your summer garden should get your tastebuds watering
Fast, EASY, HEALTHY, and perfect for your seasonal summer zucchini, squash and tomatoes!!
Even those without a garden, ’tis the time of year where the stores and markets have an abundance of inexpensive summer squash varieties and tomatoes.
Cheesy, fragrant, and filled with bright veggies and tender chicken , the Summer Garden Chicken Bake really is the edible spirit of the season!
This casserole utilizes, pesto, which can be store-bought or if you’re lucky enough to have any basil growing in your own garden that would be delightful here.
Using pesto packs a ton of fresh flavor. Make sure you choose a good quality basil pesto. The best ones are usually located in the refrigerator section of the grocery store.
A few tips:
- Basil has an extraordinary and his taste, which gets locked in to the leaves until they are picked… Lightly bruising them before processing brings out the aroma of the herb making the pesto more fragrant.
- I’ve utilized fresh tomato here. For those of you with a growing tomato harvest, this recipe will definitely showcase them.
- Mozzarella cheese can be substituted with an Italian five blend cheese or Monterey cheese if you prefer that.
- This step is totally optional… If you’d like to give your chicken a good searing before assembling the recipe, it makes the chicken cook faster, and it gets a pretty layer of caramelization on the outside.
- This recipe can be prepared ahead. Don’t bake it….just cover the assembled ingredients and keep it in the fridge. Best to leave off the tomato’s until you are ready to bake.
CJSKETOKITCHEN RECIPE SPOTLIGHT
In this section we try and highlight other recipes that might interest you. This week we decided to highlight another extremely popular and easy to make recipe:
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Summer Garden Chicken Bake
- 7 boneless chicken thighs seared
- 2 zucchini sliced; sweated
- 1 jar alfredo sauce
- 1 tsp pesto sauce
- 1 tsp garlic spread seasoning
- 2 cups cheese white(mozzarella, Italian etc.)
- 1/2 cup tomato chopped or sliced; fresh
- 1 tsp basil fresh
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Sear your chicken thighs on both sides. Chicken will not be fully cooked.
- Slice your zucchini. Place on paper towel covered baking tray. Cover liberally with salt. Allow the moisture to rise to the surface. Pat dry.
- In a 9x13 baking dish, add zucchini. Top with chicken thighs. Set aside.
- In a bowl combine jarred sauce, pesto, and garlic seasoning. Pour evenly over meat and zucchini. Top with cheese.
- Bake 35 minutes. Broil top if desired for browning. Let cool 10 minutes
- Garnish with fresh basil and sliced tomatoes.
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