This is my personal recipe for Pesto Chicken. I guess you could call it Pesto Chicken Nuyorican style. It’s different from other pesto chicken recipes in that we use a whole chicken, cut up, and not chicken breasts as is done in most recipes. And, the chicken is steamed not fried nor baked. This makes it unusual, and scrumptious in its finale.
This dish is best served over pasta (we used bucatini). But you can also use any preferred grain, be it rice, couscous, faro, quinoa, ext. With a salad, some good Chianti, and some crusty bread, you have yourself a banquet. Disfrute.
1 3 to 3½ pound fryer chicken, cut into serving pieces
1/3 cup olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 tablespoon fresh chopped oregano or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
½ cup water
½ cup dry white wine (like Chablis or Pinot Grigio)
3-4 cups fresh basil leaves (depending on how much sauce you desire)
3 tablespoons pine nuts
5 cloves garlic, peeled
½ cup olive oil
¾ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (can also use Asiago or Pecorino Romano)
- Rinse chicken pieces under cold running water and pat dry with paper towels.
- Place in a large pot, skillet or Dutch oven. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt, pepper and oregano, making sure all pieces are well seasoned. Add red wine vinegar and mix to combine.
- Add water and white wine to the chicken. Bring to boil, cover and simmer on medium-low heat until pieces are tender (about 40 minutes).
- While chicken is cooking, combine basil leaves, pine nuts and garlic in a food processor and process until very finely minced. With the machine running, add olive oil in a small stream and process until the mixture is smooth. Add cheese and process briefly, just long enough to combine.
- Drain any liquid that’s left in the chicken pot. Add pesto to chicken, mix well and serve over pasta or grain.
Yield: 6 servings or more.