Asparagus Chèvre Chicken for One

Prep Time: 10 min
Cook Time: 25 min
Serves: 1

Here’s a quick dinner “for one” that combines lemon, fresh thyme, spring asparagus and creamy goat cheese with lean chicken. The packets are steamed to create a melt-in-your-mouth meal. Cooking in parchment paper is a French technique known as “en papillote.” (pah-pee-YOHT). It is a simple, healthy cooking method and fairly fool-proof.


1 piece parchment paper
1 tsp (5 mL) olive oil
1/2 lb (0.3 kg) boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/2 cup (125 mL) leeks, sliced
1/4 red pepper, sliced
2 mushrooms, sliced
2 stalks asparagus, cut into bite-size pieces
2 tbsp (30 mL) goat cheese, soft, 21% MF, crumbled
1/2 tsp (2.5 mL) thyme, fresh
1/2 tsp (2.5 mL) lemon zest
1 tbsp (15 mL) lemon juice, fresh
1 tbsp (15 mL) chives, sliced (optional garnish)


1 Preheat oven to 400°F (200°C).
2 Cut a large sheet of parchment paper about 15 inches (38 cm) square. Alternately, fold square in half and cut into a large heart shape approximately the same size. Coat one side of parchment with olive oil out to the edges. Alternately, spray one side with non-stick vegetable cooking spray. Work on a flat surface having the oiled side up and place the piece of chicken in the centre.
3 Prepare vegetables by slicing the white of the leek and a bit of green. Sprinkle sliced leek over chicken. Follow by topping with the sliced red pepper and mushrooms. Cut asparagus into bite-size pieces. Spread over chicken.
4 Top with crumbled goat cheese and minced fresh thyme leaves.
5 Sprinkle fresh lemon zest (peel) and lemon juice over.
6 To seal up the package draw the two opposite ends together. Fold to create a 1 inch (2.5 cm) seam. Roll down tightly to create a seal. Seal other ends. Seal package tightly to prevent steam escaping during cooking.
7 Heat a skillet over medium-high heat. Place package in pan and heat for 5 minutes until the liquid inside each packet starts to bubble. Transfer the pan to the oven. Cook for approximately 20 minutes or until chicken is thoroughly cooked and reaches an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C). The parchment parcel should puff and brown slightly.
8 Open, remove chicken from paper and transfer to plate. Pour juice over and sprinkle with fresh-snipped chives (optional garnish).