Friday, July 9, 2010

Stuffed silly...

I'm sure all of you have faced the agelong dilema of...WHAT THE HECK AM I SUPPOSED TO DO WITH CHICKEN THIS TIME?

I had some boneless and skinless chicken breasts ready to go for dinner tonight. The problem was, I had no idea what to do with it. Chicken is a great ingredient because it's like a blank canvas; its simplicity marries well with almost any flavor. That simplicity though can make it BORING.

So today I found myself bored. Bored of chicken. Bored of all of the poultry recipes I've accumulated. I needed something daring and interesting. Perhaps putting a little surprise in it...literally.

I searched the refrigerator for items I could stuff the breasts with. I found goat cheese, a handful of mushrooms, some shallots and fresh basil leaves. Now that's what I'm talkin' about!

Stuffed Chicken Breasts
  • olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups of cremini mushrooms, chopped fine (food processor or mini chopper works well)
  • 1 large shallot, chopped fine (food processor or mini chopper works well)
  • kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 oz softened goat cheese
  • 6 large basil leaves, julienned
  • 4 boneless/skinless chicken breast, rinsed in cold water and dried well with paper towels
Heat up one tablespoon of olive oil in a small or medium pan over medium-high heat. When oil is glistening, add the mushrooms and shallots.
Cook for 7-10 minutes stirring occasionally, until the liquid evaporates and mushrooms start to brown. Salt and pepper to taste. Set aside in a bowl to cool.
When the mushrooms and shallots have cooled completely, add the goat cheese and basil to the bowl. Mix well.
Cut a deep pocket into the thickest part of the chicken breast. Be careful not to slice all the way through.
Divide the goat cheese mixture into four equal parts and stuff each chicken breast's pocket with one portion. Do not overstuff. Leave enough empty space near the opening of the slit to seal the breast closed. Sprinkle each breast generously with salt and pepper.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Heat one tablespoon of olive oil in a large oven-proof pan over medium-high heat. When oil is very hot, add the chicken breasts, pretty side down. Sear undisturbed for about 4 minutes.
Turn over and cook on the other side for one more minute Transfer the whole pan into the oven and bake for 12-14 minutes, depending on the thickness of your chicken. Remove from the oven and place chicken on a serving plate and let rest for at least 4 minutes. Cut into the thickest part of a breast to check for doneness before serving.

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1 comment:

  1. :) You're hilarious!!

    PS I think I'll make this tonight!