We had some cilantro pesto left over from our chicken paninis and I absolutely did not want the pesto to go to waste. I mixed three chicken breasts (about $6) with olive oil and some Southwest seasoning from McCormick (hey, can’t make everything from scratch) and grilled on the panini maker. Cooking chicken, or any meat for that matter, on the panini maker is fast becoming a habit of mine. It cooks chicken much faster than a gas grill because the heat comes from both sides, and the chicken is a lot moister.
I spread the cilantro pesto on a pizza crust I bought from Ever’man’s co-op, and topped with the cooked, diced chicken. Then I placed chunks of fresh mozzarella on top. Fresh mozzarella is a bit of a splurge at $5 for a small ball of cheese, but it’s nice to have a fancy ingredient add some depth to a simple dish.
I assembled the pizza before I left the house, and put in the oven right when we walked in (well, more like 15mins). While it cooked, the pesto “sweated” a little in the middle, so I broiled it for a bit to dry up the liquid. Everyone ate the pizza. As in, even the tot who I think may have said “yummy” or something like that. The toddler couldn’t get enough, and I couldn’t feed him fast enough. We had with a side of sliced pears because we’re out of salad. The crust (two per package, so I’m splitting the cost), chicken and cheese together cost $16, and let’s add another $4 for the pesto to round it out to $20. Not a steal, but it fed us all and we have a piece and a half left over. The good news is it was healthier than takeout and I know what was in it, and not!