Basil Balsamic Tomato Sauce w/Chicken and Mozzarella

9/20/2011

We love fresh basil. So much so that we have a plant growing in a pot in our living room right now. See?

My fingers are crossed that we’ll be able to keep it alive throughout the cooler seasons. Can you imagine? Fresh basil for dinner on a snowy night? Possibly combined with pistachios, parmesan and olive oil for a wonderful pesto dish? Or tossed in with some tomatoes to make a warm and delicious pasta sauce? Yum… I can’t wait for winter!

This particular tomato sauce that I’m getting ready to tell you about is packed with fresh basil. The flavors and aromas of this sauce are fantastic. The balsamic vinegar takes the sauce to a completely different level. It makes it sweet and awakens your taste buds all at the same time. And the basil makes it taste so fresh! It’s very easy to make and super versatile. You can: 1). Serve it as a chunky sauce for pasta; or 2). blend it down to a smoother sauce consistency if that’s more your speed; or 3). toss it in a slow cooker with a pot roast (beef) and a pile of sliced onions for a delicious dinner; or 4). pair it with grilled chicken and mozzarella they way we did tonight.

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Whichever method you choose, you’ll be happy!

Basil Balsamic Tomato Sauce w/Chicken and Mozzarella

(Serves 2)

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 (14.5 oz) can petite cut tomatoes, mostly drained
  • 24 fresh basil leaves, torn in half
  • 2 large cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp sugar substitute – we use Truvia (feel free to use sugar)
  • ½ TBSP balsamic vinegar
  • Chicken – enough for 2 people
  • Fresh mozzarella
  • Salt and Pepper

DIRECTIONS:

  1. In a medium sauce pot combine your drained tomatoes, garlic and fresh basil leaves. Cook over medium heat for 5 minutes, or until the basil is visibly wilted. Add salt, sugar substitute and balsamic vinegar and cook for an additional 10-15 minutes on medium-low. Stir periodically and revel in how amazing your kitchen smells.
  2. Prepare your chicken while your sauce is cooking. Suggested methods – grill, broil, cook in a non-stick skillet on top of your stove. (This would also be the time to boil any pasta you may have decided to include with dinner. We would have LOVED to have added some spaghetti or linguini to our dinner tonight, but alas could not. Damn carbs!).
  3. Once your sauce is done and your chicken is cooked, combine the two in an oven safe dish. Top with fresh mozzarella and place under the broiler just until melted. Serve with more fresh basil.

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