I am so happy that the local farms are starting to open and we can once again get fresh vegetables and fruits. I love asparagus season and am always on the lookout for a new recipe that showcases this versatile veggie. Of course, I also love easy recipes, especially as the longer days are here and we all like to spend more time outside and less time preparing dinner.
The most important thing about this recipe is that you use the proper Italian seasoning—you do NOT want the Italian seasoning packet that you make salad dressing with. If you do not have this seasoning in your cupboard, you can make it by mixing the herbs that are in it, just Google for list of herbs needed.
2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts (approx. 4 breasts)
1 Tablespoon Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon smoked or sweet paprika
¼ teaspoon each sea salt and pepper
12 asparagus stalks, cleaned and ends trimmed off
1 cup of sun-dried tomatoes, sliced into strips
4 deli slices of sharp provolone or Swiss cheese
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 chicken bouillon cube
1 cup water
Preheat oven to 400. Mix all of the seasonings together in a little bowl. Dissolve the bouillon cube in the water and set aside. Cut each chicken breast like a sandwich roll. Take care not to cut all the way through; you want to “butterfly” cut it. Open it up and place a slice of cheese in the middle, put 3 asparagus stalks on top of the cheese and sprinkle ¼ cup of the dried tomatoes evenly next to the asparagus. Fold the chicken breast closed and secure with a toothpick to hold, coat entire outside of chicken with some of the seasoning in the bowl, leave some to coat the remaining chicken. Repeat steps for the rest of the breasts.
Heat the olive oil in a pan on the stovetop over medium-high heat and sear each breast until golden brown, about 3–5 minutes per side. Transfer the chicken to a baking dish and pour the cup of bouillon water into the dish. Bake uncovered for 15-20 minutes until cooked all the way through. (You may also like to put one extra slice of cheese on top of each breast about 5 minutes before they are done cooking for some extra Yum!) The juices left in the dish make a nice broth to drizzle over the cooked chicken before serving.