I’ve always enjoyed baking with almonds. Almond meal adds the perfect texture to a pie crust or a moist cake but until recently I hadn’t ventured into main meals involving this versatile nut.
A girlfriend sent me a meal idea a while back that involved almond as the crust for one of her families favourite chicken dishes. She said it was a hit with her kids and very tasty. I thought I would give it a try with my own twist. I have been craving feta which is one of those foods you have to avoid when pregnant unless its cooked through.
Tonight I thought I’d create a crispy almond crust chicken breast stuffed with feta, tomatoes, pine nuts and fresh parsley. The result was a delicious dish that had my husband asking for more.
For the crust:
Combine 1 cup of fresh ground almonds (or almond meal) with 1 tablespoon of rice flour
Add a bunch of freshly chopped parsley and a sprinkle of salt.
Combine all ingredients in a sandwich bag to mix well.
Pour a thin layer of crust mixture onto a plate and leave the remaining mixture in the sandwich bag.
Crack an egg in a wide bowl and whisk.
Dice one tomato
Roughly chop a bunch of pine nuts and combine in a bowl.
Add about 50grams of feta (I tend to add more to appease my love for it)
Add a few sprigs of chopped parsley and rosemary
Season with cracked pepper, sea salt and a tablespoon of oil then combine using a fork.
Take two chicken breasts (depending on how many you are serving) and with a small sharp knife sliver through the centre of the breast to create a large pocket for your stuffing.
Preheat the over to 180 Degrees
Stuff the chicken with the feta mix, aim to keep the majority of the filling at the narrow end of the breast so as it doesn’t drool out whilst cooking. Lay the breast in the whisked egg and roll the breast to ensure both sides are well and truly covered in yolk. Take the almond mix and pour half the mix onto a plate. Place the eggy chicken breast on the bed of almond and use the bag to pour a layer over the top of the fillet. Make sure the almond mix has covered the breast before laying on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Drizzle lightly with some extra virgin olive oil. Place in the oven for twenty minutes, remove from the oven after this time and turn the chicken over before placing aluminium foil over the top of the fillets. Return to the oven again for a further 20 minutes. Check to see the chicken is nearly cooked through before removing the foil and allowing the breasts to cook for a further 10-15 minutes and crisp the outer layer.