I should warn you. This recipe is not for those who don't eat cheese...
I knew tonight's dinner would need to include this:
...We've got a tomato version of the amazon jungle in the backyard, and I'm not complaining! My basil's hanging on, too, and tomato and basil are simply classic and delightful even if a bit uncreative. (On Fridays I always go back and forth between wanting to cook up some kind of elaborate feast to celebrate the impending weekend, or eating PB&J because I'm so exhausted! This was a nice middle of the road...)
I happened to have chicken breasts, mozzarella (the good stuff!), mascarpone, and prepared pesto in the fridge. So, first I mixed some of the mascarpone cheese and pesto. (I used a 1:1 ratio, about 2 or 3 Tb. of each for two chicken breasts.)
Then butterfly your chicken, but don't cut all the way through, like this:
Spread mascarpone-pesto mixture on the chicken breasts, but don't spread it too close to the side with the opening, or it will run all over when baking. (You'll probably have some run out a bit anyway.) I used some toothpicks to hold them together, though I don't know that they actually accomplished anything!
Bake the chicken at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through and there is no pink. While the chicken is cooking, slice tomato, mozzarella, and basil. Fix any sides you want to accompany this delicious dish...I opted for a spinach salad. Top cooked chicken with tomato, basil, and mozzarella, and drizzle with a bit of balsamic vinaigrette. I served with extra mascarpone-pesto on the side. Voila! My two year old gobbled this up (sans tomato) and told me, "This smells bootiful mama! Yummy, yummy!" That's really the only critique I need!
Now that we are full and happy we're off to watch the football team at the school where my husband works. Good food, a happy toddler, and small-town football. Love it.