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Olive Garden is the leading restaurant in the Italian dining segment with more than 800 restaurants, more than 96,000 employees and more than $3.6 billion in annual sales. Olive Garden is a division of Darden Restaurants, Inc., (NYSE: DRI), which owns and operates more than 2,100 restaurants that generate over $8.5 billion in annual sales. Headquartered in Orlando, Fla., and employing more than 200,000 people, Darden is recognized for a culture that rewards caring for and responding to people. In 2014, Darden was named to the FORTUNE “100 Best Companies to Work For” list for the fourth year in a row. Olive Garden is committed to making a difference in the lives of others in the local community. As part of this commitment, Olive Garden restaurants have donated nearly 30 million pounds of food to local community food banks across the country.

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Chicken Caprese



CHICKEN CAPRESE
Olive Garden Copycat Recipe

Serves 6

Tomatoes and Basil
2 pounds (about 8-10) Roma (plum) tomatoes, cored and cut into 1 inch pieces
30 medium fresh basil leaves (no stems), cut into 1-inch pieces
4 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, divided use
3 tablespoons minced garlic, divided use
3 1/2 teaspoons Italian seasoning, divided use
1 1/2 teaspoons and 1 tablespoon salt, divided use

Chicken
1 1/2 cups and 1 tablespoon flour, divided use
2 teaspoons black pepper
6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts or breast fillets
vegetable oil

 Pasta
1 pound angel hair pasta

Sauce
1/2 cup white wine
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese (for top)

TOMATOES AND BASIL PREPARATION: Combine Roma tomatoes, basil, 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, 2 tablespoons of minced garlic, 1 1/2 teaspoons of Italian seasoning and 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt in a large bowl and blend thoroughly. Cover, set aside and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

CHICKEN PREPARATION: Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Combine 1 1/2 cups of flour, 1 tablespoon of salt, black pepper and the remaining 2 teaspoons of Italian seasoning in a shallow dish. Dredge chicken in the mixture, shaking off any excess.  Coat a large, nonstick skillet with vegetable oil and heat over medium-high heat.

Place chicken in skillet and saute for about two minutes on each side, or until just golden brown. If skillet is not large enough, saute the chicken in batches.  When finished, transfer chicken to a large baking dish and place in oven to cook for approximately 10 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees.

PASTA PREPARATION: Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and set aside until needed.

SAUCE PREPARATION: While pasta is cooking, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil in a medium sauce pan over medium heat. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of minced garlic and saute for approximately 1 minute. Do not brown.

Slowly add the remaining 1 tablespoon of flour and stir to combine.  Add white wine and bring to a boil. Boil for approximately 1 minute. Remove marinated tomato and basil mixture from refrigerator. Drain tomatoes and basil from liquid and set aside until needed. Add 1/2 cup of the marinade liquid and saute for approximately 1 minute.  Add heavy cream. Lower heat and bring to a simmer. Add grated Parmesan cheese.

ASSEMBLING CHICKEN CAPRESE: Preheat broiler.  Remove chicken from baking dish and set aside until needed. Transfer the pasta to baking dish and partly coat with sauce.  Pour the desired amount of the remaining sauce on pasta and evenly distribute tomatoes and basil over pasta. Place chicken on top of pasta. Sprinkle shredded mozzarella cheese evenly over chicken.  Place baking dish into broiler for approximately 2-3 minutes or until mozzarella cheese has melted.

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