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CHICKEN BREASTS STUFFED WITH OLIVES, SAGE AND WALNUTS

With the winter chills blowing in more and more each day, a hearty, home-cooked meal is just the thing to warm up the family. This delicious meal also provides a healthy dose of polyunsaturated fats and minerals from the walnuts and tasty, lean protein from the chicken. This recipe is very versatile and quick to prepare as the chicken can be stuffed in advance and kept in the fridge or cooked and served cold.

Ingredients:

Serves 4

4 organic or free-range chicken breasts, skinless and boneless
150g pitted olives
1 garlic clove
15g fresh sage leaves
100g walnut halves
4 tbsp mild or medium olive oil plus a little extra
Freshly ground pepper to taste

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180˚C/gas mark 4.
  2. Rub a little oil over the base of a roasting tin.
  3. Carefully cut a slit in the side of each chicken breast to create a pocket.
  4. Blend, or finely chop and mix together, the olives, garlic, sage, walnuts and oil until fairly smooth.
  5. Stuff each chicken breast with the olive mixture and place them in the roasting tin. Rub the excess over the top of each chicken breast.
  6. Put the roasting tin on a baking tray and cook for around 20-25 minutes or until the meat juices run clear.
  7. Sprinkle with black pepper before serving.

Patrick recommends serving with roasted Mediterranean vegetables which is an excellent nutritional all-rounder including courgettes, red onions and red, orange or yellow peppers. Adding some sweet potato or butternut squash to this mix ensures a healthy mix of vitamins, fibre, antioxidants as well as slow-releasing carbohydrates. Alternatively, the stuffed chicken may also be served with roasted baby new potatoes and steamed vegetables or salad.