We had company over for dinner tonight, so I tried a new bread recipe to accompany the spinach stuffed chicken and crepe manicotti I served. It is a fairly standard loaf, but features the inclusion of pine nuts, asiago cheese, and fresh basil from the garden.
Come to think of it, those ingredients sound like the makings of pesto. Which begs the question, why didn't I just put in a few dollops of store-bought pesto to my basic dough and be done with it? Now that I've tasted it, it was good bread, but I'm not sure it lived up to the effort of toasting, grating, and chopping! I'll have to try the leftovers as toast in the morning and see if my opinion has improved.
The chicken was a big hit, however. It looked quite attractive and the servings went a long way. I pounded out the marinated breasts into thin paillards, rolled it around my spinach and mushroom stuffing with various cheeses and seasoning, seared the outside for a nice crust and color, and finished it off in the oven while the bread and manicotti rested. I sliced the meat into spirals (a messy process, but pretty in the end), deglazed the pan, and poured a thin trickle over the plated meat.
I was too busy to get a photo of the finished product, but Jeff snapped this picture just before the chicken went in the oven. It's a very filling course, so each breast serves about two.