I think this has become one of my most favorite chicken dishes. The mixture of the goat cheese, lemon and walnuts is simply spectacular.
It’s both delicious and nutritious.
1/4 walnut halves
1/4 cup fresh goat cheese, softened
1/2 tsp finely grated lemon zest
1 garlic clove minced
salt and freshly ground pepper
Four 6 oz. skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup chicken stock or low sodium broth
2 tablespoons walnut oil (optional, you can use olive oil if you don’t have it)
1/4 cup chopped parsley
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Spread the walnuts on a pie plate and toast for 6 minutes until fragrant. Let cool then chop.
In a small bowl mash the goat cheese with the lemon zest, garlic and half of the walnuts. Season with salt and pepper.
Using a small knife cut a pocket in the side of each chicken breast. Keep the pocket opening on the smaller side.
Stuff the chicken breast with the mixture and gently press to flatten them.
In a large ovenproof skillet, heat the olive oil until shimmering. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and cook over moderately high heat turning once, until browned for about 6 minutes, on each side.
Transfer the skillet to the oven and roast the chicken for 5 minutes. Transfer the chicken breasts to a platter and keep warm.
Add the lemon juice and stock to the skillet and cook over moderately high heat scraping up any brown bits stuck to the pan. Simmer for 3 minutes. Stir in the walnut oil, parsley and the remaining chopped walnuts.
Transfer the chicken breasts to plates, spoon the walnut sauce on top and serve.