As summer morphs into fall, it’s fun to make recipes that still take advantage of the abundance of tomatoes out there (yes, it’s me again – the tomato lady, lol!) but to give them a heartier twist. And when that twist includes easy boneless-chicken breast and a simple balsamic vinegar reduction? Well, count me in.
I’ve been playing around with this recipe all summer with just a few little changes here or there. At its most basic, it’s chicken, herbs, tomatoes and the balsamic reduction. Absolute simplicity. To save time, I make the reduction as the chicken cooks, even though it dirties another pan.
If you want to put in just a few more ingredients for a bit more complexity, you couldn’t go wrong with sauteing a few onions and sliced mushrooms right in the pan with the chicken, tossing in a little garlic and then proceeding with the rest of the recipe.
Everyone I’ve served this recipe to agrees, oddly enough, that even though the chicken is great, it’s the tomatoes that really steal the show. My only regrets? Not making even MORE tomatoes and not serving this with orzo or an orzo based pilaf instead of rice. Maybe next time.
This makes extra reduction, but Balsamic Reduction is great for so many recipes. My Grilled Caprese Chicken, for one. Watch for sales prices on the chicken, buy extra when it’s at its low and package up in portions suitable for your family. Check your pharmacy for great sale prices on honey. Who’d thunk it! And don’t buy the “best” Balsamic (or use the worst) for this recipe. Check Trader Joes or Aldi.
Balsamic Glazed Chicken & Tomatoes
For the Glaze:
- 1 cup Balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 2 teaspoons butter
In a small, heavy saucepan, mix together the Balsamic, honey and thyme. Bring to a boil, reduce to a good simmer and reduce to about 1/2 to 1/3 cup, or until the mixture has thickened slightly and coats a spoon. Watch carefully at the end, this will take 15 to 20 minutes.
Remove from heat and whisk in butter a little at a time. Cool to room temperature. (This will cool faster if transferred to a bowl.)
Chicken & Tomatoes:
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
- Salt and pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon thyme
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 or three large tomatoes, halved pole to pole
- Balsamic reduction
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large, oven proof skillet. In the meantime, trim chicken breasts of any fat and gently pound the thickest part of the chicken a few times. An even layer isn’t necessary. Sprinkle with salt and pepper as desired. Sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon thyme.
Saute chicken until golden on one side, turn. While chicken is cooking, prepare tomatoes. Cut pole to pole and remove most of the seeds. If the inside portion is hard and whitish, remove some of that, too.
Turn the chicken over, add tomato halves, cut side up; nestle them in between the breasts. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes until chicken is cooked through. Remove from heat. Drizzle with about half of the Balsamic Reduction.
Note: Balsamic reduction will keep in the refrigerator, tightly covered in a clean jar for two to three weeks.
I’ll be sharing this at our very own Throwback Thursday Link party, hosted by Quinn, Alli, Carlee & Meaghan. Click the link to check out our blogs & rules or just click the blue froggy, below.