Chicken with Zucchini, Basil, Pine Nuts and Tomato Jam

, from Issue #30. September, 2015
Photography by Aaron McLean.
Chicken with Zucchini, Basil, Pine Nuts and Tomato Jam

Take chicken to new heights with the addition of zucchini 'noodles', pine nuts and a tomato jam. It's a midweek dinner winner.


Serves: 4


4 small, boneless chicken breasts, skin on
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons dried tarragon
finely grated zest 1 lemon

¼ cup currants
2 tablespoons port, Marsala or sherry
2 tablespoons olive oil
small knob of butter
4 zucchini, julienne
¼ cup pine nuts
¼ cup shredded basil leaves
sea salt and freshly ground pepper

Tomato jam
1 x 400 gram tin crushed Italian tomatoes
finely grated zest and juice 1 lemon
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
½ teaspoon ground coriander
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons black or yellow mustard seeds
¼ cup brown sugar


Tomato jam: Place all the ingredients in a saucepan, season and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer gently for 20-30 minutes until reduced and thick, stirring occasionally.

Cool and store in the refrigerator.

Preheat the oven to 180˚C.

Combine the olive oil, tarragon and lemon zest and rub over the chicken. Refrigerate if not using immediately. Remove from the fridge 30 minutes before cooking.

Zucchini: Combine the currants and port, cover and microwave for 1 minute. Set aside to infuse.

Season the chicken generously. Heat a little olive oil in an ovenproof sauté pan and cook the chicken skin side down until a good golden colour. Turn over and transfer to the oven. Roast for 15-20 minutes or until cooked through. Cooking time will depend on the size of the chicken breasts.  Transfer to a plate, cover loosely and rest for 10 minutes.

Zucchini: Heat the olive oil in a sauté pan and drop in the butter. Add the zucchini and pine nuts, season and toss over a high heat for 2 minutes to just wilt. Add the currants with any liquid and bubble up for 1 minute. Stir through the basil.

To serve: Slice the chicken thinly on the diagonal. Place the zucchini mixture on serving plates and top with the chicken, drizzling with any meat resting juices. Serve with a spoonful of tomato jam.(Tomato jam makes about 1½ cups).

Menu: Serve this with Lemongrass and Seafood Soup to start, andGinger Beer Poached Pears to finish.