Chicken Marbella with stuffed tomatoes

Had my first of several holiday dinner parties the other night and made a long time favourite recipe called Chicken Marbella.  The recipe comes from the cookbook “the Silver Pallet” and I think it is the recipe that made this book famous (it is why I bought the book). The beauty of this recipe is that you make it the day before and marinate it overnight, then just add a couple of ingredients and pop it into the oven.  I knew the dish had delicious juices that I didn’t want to waste and needed something to soak up the liquid with.  I decided on quinoa but thought from a colour standpoint that would be beige on beige which I have a big problem with.  Food has to be appetizing visually first, colour is a big factor in setting your anticipation of what you are about to taste.

I decided to stuff tomatoes with the quinoa so that I had a bright colour to serve with the chicken. Served with a green salad, I covered the colour wheel pretty well. Both recipes are below.  It was so tasty and filling I am thinking of making it again for my next dinner party!

Stuffed Tomatoes with Quinoa

stuffed tomatoes-quinoa

I have blogged before on stuffed tomatoes and they are so easy.  Just spoon out the pulp and leave a shell.  Turn upside down on paper towel to drain and then stuff with whatever you like.  I made quinoa with a touch of lemon juice added and then mixed in about half a cup of grated parmesan cheese when it was ready.  Then I just stuffed the tomato shells and added a bit of parmesan to the top so they would brown and baked them for about 40 – 45 minutes at 350 degrees.

Chicken Marbella

chicken marbella

Notice the red theme? (pre Xmas dinner party).

This recipe is taken from the Silver Pallet Cookbook. I am providing my version however which has a couple of slight variations.  Serves 6-8 with leftovers

8 chicken breasts cut in half (or half breasts and half thighs)
3 tsps chopped or minced garlic
2 tbsp dried oregano
freshly ground black pepper to taste  (you can add some salt but I don’t)
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup pitted prunes
1/2 cup pitted Spanish green olives
1/4 cup capers with a bit of juice
3 bay leaves
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white wine
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a large bowl combine chicken, garlic, oregano, pepper, vinegar, olive oil, prunes, olives, capers and juice, and bay leaves. Cover and let marinate, refrigerated, overnight.Before cooking, arrange chicken in a large, shallow baking dish and spoon marinade over it evenly. Sprinkle chicken pieces with brown sugar and pour white wine around them.Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, basting frequently with pan juices. Chicken is done when thigh pieces, pricked with a fork at their thickest, yield clear yellow (rather than pink) juice.

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