Monday, May 30, 2011

Baked Chicken with Pears, Spinach, and Blue Cheese

Sorry for the delay in a new post; as Rona mentioned, I graduated Boston University last weekend! With 3 guests crammed into my small apartment, while also trying to find the space to pack up my belongings, cooking just wasn't a priority. But I am now temporarily back at my parent's house, which feels like such an upgrade from my kitchen in Boston (although I still do miss it). There's something about being back home that makes me feel like a child again, not like the 21 year old college graduate that I am. I see how easy it will be for me to slack off and not cook nearly as much because I have my mom and dad here to make the food I miss all year while away at school. But I'll try to make sure that doesn't happen...

This dish is the first I have made since being home, and unfortunately I was rushed because I only had about an hour and a half to cook before meeting up with friends. While the pictures are sub-par,  I think the dish was pretty tasty. 

Ingredients (serves 4)
Adapted from Whole Foods

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts 
Sea salt
Black pepper 
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 
1/2 cup red onion diced
4 to 6 cups packed spinach (not baby), washed, dried, stems removed 
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar 
2 ripe Anjou pears, peeled, cored and cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices 
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley 
3/4 cup blue cheese crumbles

I have to give my mom a shout out in this post: I took the parsley from her garden in our backyard, which not only saves me money, but feels more fresh than anything I could find in the supermarket. Thanks mom!


1) Preheat the oven to 375°.

2) Wash and season each chicken breast with salt and pepper. In a large, oven-proof dish (I used a dutch oven), heat 1 tablespoon olive oil and sear chicken breasts on each side for 3-4 minutes until lightly golden brown. Place dish in oven until chicken is cooked through, roughly 15 minutes. 

3) While the chicken is cooking, heat 1tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet and sauté the red onion until softened. Add the spinach and cook until wilted. Add salt and pepper to taste, then transfer to a large serving dish. 

4) Wipe out the pan and heat the remaining tablespoon of olive oil, along with the 2 tablespoons of vinegar. Add the pears and heat until softened. Stir in parsley.  

5) After the chicken has cooked through, arrange over spinach. Top with cooked pears and sprinkle on blue cheese. And you're ready to serve!


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