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Chicken Breasts with Cherry Tomatoes, Zucchini and Olives

As if cherry tomatoes werent small enough already, new varieties of even tinier tomatoes are turning up in markets. They are much sweeter, too, with fewer bitter seeds than regular cherry tomatoes. Raw, theyre a perfect addition to salads, and if cooked just briefly (so that they hold their shape), they bring a delightful sweet-and-tangy flavor to sautéed dishes. Two of the most common new varieties of tiny cherry tomatoes are called Sweet 100s and grape tomatoes.

Ingredients:

  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 2 zucchini, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 2 Tbs. chopped shallot
  • 2 cups halved red and yellow cherry tomatoes
      or whole small cherry tomatoes, such as
      grape tomatoes or Sweet 100s, stems
      removed
  • 1/3 cup pitted, coarsely chopped black
      Mediterranean olives
  • 1 tsp. chopped fresh rosemary
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves,
      each about 6 oz., pounded to an even
      thickness
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine or vermouth
  • 1 1/2 cups long-grain white rice or 1 3/4 cups
      orzo, cooked according to package
      directions

Directions:

In a large nonstick fry pan over medium-high heat, warm 1 Tbs. of the olive oil. Add the zucchini and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, about 6 minutes. Add the shallot and cook, stirring, until softened, about 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, olives and rosemary and cook, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes are heated through but not collapsed, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer the mixture to a plate and set aside.

Add the remaining 1 Tbs. oil to the pan. Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper. Cook, turning once, until browned on both sides and firm when pressed in the centers, about 8 minutes total. Transfer to a plate and keep warm.

Add the wine to the pan and bring to a boil. Return the vegetables to the pan and cook for 1 minute to reheat, stirring once or twice. Transfer to a warmed platter and top with the chicken breasts. Serve immediately with hot rice. Serves 4.
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Collection Series, Chicken, by Rick Rodgers (Simon & Schuster, 2001).