I am so happy that the clocks have gone forward and that we can finally enjoy the beautiful evening light. It not only means that my husband drives home along the motorway in the light (which somehow makes me feel a little less on edge), it also means I don’t have to get all my food-photography done during such a tight “day light” window.
In the part of Wiltshire that we now live, the wildlife, walks and sunsets are incredible. My bird table is brimming with life, from woodpeckers, robins and finches to a big white barn owl! I honestly can’t believe our luck, and the urban jungle of London feels a life time ago! I seem to have also adopted a pheasant who we have aptly named Hoppy due to his slight limp, who knocks very loudly on the front door every morning for his breakfast of seeds.
In the mean time I have been trying out lots of new dishes recently, all blood-sugar friendly of course and packed with nutritional goodness. One of our favourite at the moment is this baked chicken pesto. It’s incredible served straight from the oven with a homemade salad or some roasted vegetables and one dish will serve 4 people easily- or 2 people over 2 meals. We usually enjoy our second meal cold (when the flavours are even more infused and even more delicious) on a couple of pieces of home-made bread with sun-dried tomato and sometimes a little fried halloumi. I make my pesto with added spinach to bulk it out and give an extra dose of iron. You can use any nut of choice, although pistachios are wonderful and creamy for pesto, and if you don’t like garlic then feel free to leave it out. You could even add some roasted red pepper, olive or sun-dried tomato if you want to add in new flavours.
- 100g Spinach
- 75g Pistachio
- 1 tsp Sea Salt
- 2 Handfuls Fresh Basil leaves
- 2 Garlic Cloves
- 500g Chicken Breast (or thighs)
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil (around 150ml)
- Pre-heat oven to 200°C
- In to a food processor place the spinach, basil, pistachios, sea salt and garlic cloves and blitz for a few pulses
- Now carefully add in the olive oil a little at a time until the mixture is thick and creamy
- On to a chopping board, carefully chop your chicken breasts in to length strips (if you do not do this, and you just place the breasts straight in the oven then you'll need to cook them for longer to ensure that they are cooked through).
- Spread 1-2TBSP pesto in to the bottom of a non stick or oiled baking dish
- Place the strips of chicken carefully on top, you can pack them in to each other nice and tightly
- Add the remaining pesto on top and cover the chicken with it
- Place a layer of foil carefully over the dish and pop in the oven and bake at 200°C for 20 minutes.
- After 20 minutes you can take the foil off and bake for further 20 - 25 minutes on 180°C degrees until the top is slightly browned, crispy and baked (check a piece of chicken to make sure cooked through before serving)
- Serve straight away or allow to fully cool and enjoy cold
- Will keep in the fridge for up to 2 days, in sealed container