Caprese Panzanella with Chicken
For the chicken-
4 6oz chicken breasts, pounded to the same thickness for even cooking
1/2 tsp each garlic powder, oregano and thyme
1/2 tsp each salt and pepper
2 TBSP EVOO (for pan frying)
For the salad-
1 1/2 C (226G) FRESH mozzarella cheese, diced into 1/4″ cubes
2 1/2C fresh torn basil leaves
Balsamic vinaigrette or glaze (optional)
For the Tomatoes-
3-4c cherry tomatoes
8 cloves garlic, peeled and halved
1/2 white onion, cut into 1/2″ chunks
1/4 tsp salt and pepper + a little more to taste
1/2 tsp each garlic powder, thyme and oregano
1-2 TBSP EVOO
For the croutons-
6c day old bread or buns (approx 3 Portuguese rolls) diced into 1″ cubes
3 tsp oregano
1 tsp thyme
2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
Preheat your oven to 400F. Line 2 baking pans with tin foil.
In a large bowl, add your cubed bread, olive oil, oregano, thyme, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Toss everything together with your hands to make sure everything is mixed up. Pour on to one of your tin foil lined pans. Bake at 400F for 15 minutes, or until golden brown.
In the same bowl, add your tomatoes. Drizzle with 2 tbsp olive oil. Add your garlic cloves, onion, salt, pepper, garlic powder, thyme and oregano. Toss everything together with your hands and make sure everything is coated evenly. Pour tomato mixture on to the second tin foil lined pan. Bake at 400F for 20 minutes, or until nicely roasted.
In a small bowl, mix together your chicken seasonings. (salt, pepper, oregano, thyme, and garlic powder.) Once mixed, season both sides of your chicken breasts.
In a pan over medium heat, add your 2 tbsp of olive oil. Let it get nice and toasty. Add your chicken breasts to the pan. Let cook on the one side for about 5-7 minutes. Once browned nicely on that side, turn the chicken over and continue cooking until it is fully cooked through. (This will be about another 7 minutes.) Once your chicken is fully cooked (check with a meat thermometer for a temperature that reads 160F) remove from the pan and to a cutting board to rest.
Slice your chicken in to thin strips, or dice it.
In a large salad bowl, add your roasted tomatoes, croutons, chicken, mozzarella cheese and torn basil. Drizzle with a balsamic vinaigrette or a balsamic glaze. Or eat it without it! It is delicious either way!