My first ever properfoodie blog post! whoop!
As its the first, I feel its appropriate to share the dish I’ve been cooking week after week for the last few months (or maybe even years – time escapes me!!) – its that tasty and that easy to throw together. Even the pesto can be made in advance and frozen, or in desperate times a jar of pesto will also do the job just fine.
I hope you give this recipe a whirl – trust me it will become top of the favourites list.
If you’re not sure about pesto I recommend you watch Gennaro Contaldos pesto video – his love of basil and passion for pesto is sure to bring you around. Although I found 80g of parmesan/pecorino to be little overpowering so I’ve altered the below recipe to my taste. I recommend having a spoon on standby and adding a bit of parmesan at a time with a taste test in between each addition.
As for the quinoa; homemade pesto and a squeeze of lime is definitely the best thing to match with its delicate nutty flavour (and this low fat, tiny grain isn’t too bad for us either).
So go on give it a go. I promise that the crunchy quinoa and broccoli mixed in with creamy pesto and a zing of lime will have your taste buds dancing.
Chicken and tender stem broccoli with pesto quinoa
For the pesto:
1 garlic clove peeled
20g fresh grated parmesan
100g fresh basil leaves
20g pine nuts
100ml olive oil
Pinch sea salt
For the Chicken quinoa:
2 chicken breasts cut into 2cm pieces
500ml chicken stock
125g tenderstem broccoli cut into 3cm pieces
First off is the easy peasy pesto: pulse the garlic, pine nuts and salt in a processor. Add the basil leaves and lightly pulse until roughly broken up. Add the oil and pulse once again. Whilst continuing to pulse gradually add the parmesan until you’re happy with the colour and taste (you may not need all of it). And that’s it, pesto done.
For the chicken quinoa: Place the quinoa in a pan and pour in the chicken stock. Bring to the boil then cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until air holes appear in the quinoa.
After 15 minutes remove the quinoa from the heat, add the juice of 1 lime and leave to stand with the lid on for a further 10 minutes.
Meanwhile heat up 2 tablespoons of oil in wok or large frying pan and stir fry the chicken. Once the chicken is cooked through add the broccoli and continue to stir fry. Try not to overcook the broccoli as it will lose its colour and crunch.
Fluff up the quinoa with a fork before adding 3 large tablespoons of pesto. Any leftover pesto can be frozen. Add the pesto quinoa to the chicken and stir together well. Serve with a wedge of lime and extra basil leaves.