We’ve finally had some rain here in California and I believe Ellen said it best during the Oscar ceremony last night. “We’re fine…thank you for your prayers”.
No kidding, I nearly forgot what it felt like to have that wet stuff falling from the sky and to feel temperatures below 65. We’re in dire need of rain, so even though the recent rainfall is a drop in the bucket, we’re happy to get it.
Since my appetite seems to be totally connected to the weather, I’ve been really feeling comfort food for the past week. Soups, stews, chilis and this one skillet chicken dish with a creamy tomato sauce. It has COZY written all over it and is just what the weather man ordered.
We are going to serve this deliciousness over pasta so before we get the chicken going, grab your pasta of choice and cook it according to the package directions. I chose penne but it would be fantastic with fusilli or rigatoni or even spaghetti or linguine. The choice is yours.
The basis for flavor in this dish is this mixture of seasonings. Basil, garlic powder, rosemary, and a little salt and fresh ground pepper. I used all dry seasonings with the exception of the rosemary, but would absolutely go with all dry seasonings in a flash.
Place 3 tablespoons of flour in a shallow dish and add 2 tablespoons of the seasoning mixture. Reserve the remaining seasoning mixture for later.
Almost every time I cook chicken, I slice the breasts in half to reduce the amount of cooking time needed and make them a more reasonable serving size. Use a sharp knife to slice into the thickest edge of your boneless, skinless breast.
Continue the cut through the breast, all the way, and then slice it right in half.
Lightly coat each piece of chicken with the seasoned flour mixture, shaking off the excess.
Heat a couple of tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. I’m using my big, beautiful 12.5″ Gastrolux saute pan here. It’s my pan of choice for most of my one skillet meals. Cook the chicken, in batches if necessary, until golden brown and cooked through. Transfer the cooked chicken to a plate and we’ll get started on the quick pan sauce.
Add a little more oil to the pan, if necessary, and add 1/2 cup of chopped onion. Cook and stir for a couple of minutes and then add 1/2 teaspoon of minced garlic. Cook and stir for another minute, until the garlic is fragrant and the onion has softened.
Pour in 2 cups of low sodium chicken broth and a can of diced tomatoes that has been drained.
Add the reserved seasoning mixture.
While the sauce is simmering away, add 2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour to 1/4 cup fat free half-and-half and stir until completely combined. I’m a big fan of fat free half-and-half. I love the stuff! It adds richness and body to sauces without any fat and this, my friends, is a very good thing.
Add the half-and-half slurry to the pan and stir until thickened. Add the chicken back to the pan and spoon some of the rich, velvety sauce and tomatoes over the top. Allow to cook for just another minute or two over low heat.
Oh, wait, maybe we should plate it up. Yes, let’s be civilized.
I highly recommend you serve it over pasta with a little Parmesan sprinkled over the top for good measure. Although, it would also be incredible with mashed or roasted potatoes.
This is one satisfying meal on a cold and rainy night.
Skillet Herbed Chicken and Tomatoes
- 8 ounces dry pasta of your choice, penne, fusilli, spaghetti, linguine
- 2 teaspoons dried basil
- 1 ½ teaspoons dried crushed rosemary
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 5 tablespoons all-purpose flour, divided
- 2 pounds thin-sliced boneless skinless chicken breasts, see recipe Notes
- 2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil, or as needed
- ½ cup diced onion, yellow or white
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes
- 2 cups low sodium chicken broth
- ¼ cup half and half
- grated Parmesan cheese, for garnish (optional)
- Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain well.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl combine the basil, garlic powder, rosemary, salt and pepper and set aside. Place 3 tablespoons of flour in a shallow dish and add 1 tablespoon of the seasoning mixture. Reserve the remaining seasoning mixture for later.
- Coat the bottom of a large skillet with olive oil and place over MEDIUM-HIGH heat. Lightly dredge the chicken in the seasoned flour, shaking off the excess, and add it to the pan. Cook for about 3 to 4 minutes per side, or until golden brown and cooked through. Cook in batches if necessary. Remove the chicken from the skillet and keep warm. Discard any remaining seasoned flour mixture.
- Add a little more olive oil to the skillet and return it to MEDIUM heat. Add the onion and cook and stir for about 3 minutes until softened. Add the minced garlic and cook, stirring for another minute. Add the diced tomatoes, chicken broth, and reserved seasoning mixture to the skillet.
- Stir 2 tablespoons of flour into the half and half, mix until completely smooth, and add the mixture to the skillet. Bring the sauce to a simmer, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to LOW, return the chicken to the skillet, and cook until heated through.
- Serve the chicken and creamy tomato sauce over pasta. Garnish individual servings with Parmesan cheese, if desired.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated using generic ingredients, and is an estimate not a guarantee. For more accurate results, please refer to the labels on your ingredients at home.
Adapted from McCormick Gourmet