This is one of the easiest and most delicious recipes to make when you only have a few minutes to spend on preparing dinner. It’s fresh, tasty and healthy, and only takes 5 minutes to put together. Then it cooks for about 45 minutes, while you go off and do other things, before needing another 5 minutes at the end to finish up and serve.
It’s also versatile in that you can serve it with many different options of “starch”. If you’re going low-carb, it works really well with cauliflower or broccoli rice, as I’ve served it here, or cauliflower or broccoli mash. You can also go more traditional and serve it with mashed potato or sweet potato, or rice of any description and/or lightly steamed green beans.
For the tomatoes, I used miniature red ones and baby yellow plum tomatoes, both of which I had in my garden. I also highly recommend adding celery along with the onion as a base – I just didn’t have any on hand when I photographed making this dish.
Something I tried recently, and absolutely loved, is sprinkling some za’atar over the whole thing before putting it in the oven. Za’atar is a Middle-Eastern spice that has become quite trendy lately and when I tasted it, I could totally see why. It’s a mixture of sumac (a Middle-Eastern berry with a tangy, lemony flavour), sesame seeds and other herbs like thyme, coriander and oregano. You can find it in many supermarkets, including Food Lovers’ Market (if you’re in South Africa).
These quantities are per person so for more than one, just increase the ingredients proportionally, and use a bigger oven-proof dish. Easy as a pie (and without the crust)!
- 1 chicken breast, deboned and skinless
- 1 celery stick, sliced (optional)
- ½ small onion, peeled and sliced
- ±100g baby tomatoes, halved, or ½ big tomato, chopped
- 1 small rosemary or thyme stalk
- 2T Greek yoghurt
- Salt and pepper
- 2t butter or olive oil
- ½c broccoli, washed
- Squeeze lemon juice (optional)
Preheat the oven to 180°C, and use some of the butter or olive oil to grease an oven-proof dish.
Place the onions and celery in the bottom of the dish and arrange the rosemary/thyme stalk on top.
On top of the herbs, place a chicken breast.
Spoon the yoghurt over the chicken.
Spread it out to cover the chicken (it helps to keep the chicken moist), then season with salt and pepper (and za’atar, if you’re using it).
Cover it all with the tomatoes.
Bake for about 45 minutes until the chicken is cooked through and the tomatoes are soft and perhaps even slightly charred on the edges.
In the meantime, prepare the broccoli rice (or cauliflower rice, ordinary white rice or mashed potato, if you prefer). If you are doing broccoli or cauliflower rice, place the veg into a grinder and whizz for literally about 10 seconds to create rice-sized pieces.
About 5 minutes before the chicken looks like it should be ready, place the remaining butter or olive oil in a frying pan.
When it’s heated up, add your broccoli or cauliflower rice and sauté for about 5 minutes until it’s just starting to brown. I like to squeeze some lemon juice over too, once it’s cooked for a few minutes.
When it’s all ready, remove the chicken and rosemary from the oven-proof dish and stir everything else well together.
To serve, either replace the chicken in the sauce to serve from the table, or arrange the broccoli rice and chicken on a plate, then pour the sauce over.
© Alexandra Lawrence and Inspired Nourishment, 2015