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Chicken for Dinner

 

Chicken for dinner

Chicken for dinner

We eat a lot of chicken…organic chicken actually.  The organic chicken has a much more succulent flavor because those chickens eat, forage and scratch in their surroundings, running around and doing chicken things.  Have you ever watched chickens?  They do funny chicken things.  I will have to video my sister in-laws chickens, they are hilarious! They are much happier than being packed in a cage for their entire life.  Look at it this way, the chicken gets to have a good life, with just one bad day.

So today I was wondering what to make and decided on stuffed chicken breasts.  After scrounging through my fridge, pantry and garden I came up with these ingredients:

Mushrooms, shredded mozzarella, spinach, basil, a jar of sun dried tomatoes, half of a shallot and Italian dressing.

Remember when you are foraging, like the chicken, for something to eat a small amount works.  The shredded mozzarella came from making a pizza and the last 1/2 cup is still sticking around, same with the Italian dressing…last bit in the bottle.  The spinach and basil from the garden will give the chicken a fresh bright flavor and the smoky sundried tomatoes will add that deeper flavor element  The last of some fresh mushrooms and shallot heated before stuffing give the filling a bit of something yummy as well.

As I am using two chicken breasts cut in half length-wise, (don’t cut through, you want to open like a book and stuff it all in) you really don’t need a lot of ingredients.

Marinate the chicken in the dressing, for an hour or so, sauté the chopped shallot and  chopped mushrooms for a few minutes in some evoo and let cool.

Open your chicken and stuff in your filling ingredients and lay in a couple of leaves of basil and spinach along with the cheese and tomatoes, mushroom and shallots.

Chicken breast filled with cheese, veggies and more cheese

Chicken breast filled with cheese, veggies and more cheese

 

Twine tied chicken breast

Twine tied chicken breast

I used some twine to tie them together because I may have over stuffed them a bit and I don’t want all the cheese to run out and take everything with it…kind of like a roaring river of cheese with a sundried tomato and mushroom kayak ripping down the rapids…or you could use some toothpicks.  Then in a cast iron skillet I browned both sides and then added 1-2 tablespoons of the remaining Italian dressing and a tablespoon of butter over the top along with a can of French onion soup and put in the oven at 350 for 30-45 minutes.  Cook until internal temperature is 165 degrees.  I actually take out at 160 and let it keep cooking with a piece of foil over the top.

Baked stuffed chicken

Baked stuffed chicken

Then some sautéed green beans rounds out our meal and a beautiful California red!

Green beans

Green beans

Imagine some other fillings that would add a wonderful flavor profile.  Remember, you don’t need a lot of the ingredients for even three or four chicken breasts.

How about dried apricots, gruyere cheese, basil and sliced pecans?

Or, a few slices of lemon, garlic, leeks, tarragon and feta cheese?

Oh, I know…how about slices of tomato, cheddar cheese or pimento cheese and wrap the whole thing in a couple slices of bacon….what????
Maybe Hawaiian chicken pizza stuffing, pineapple juice for marinating, then inside some sliced ham, bacon, tomato and mozzarella or pepper jack cheese?  I think we are having chicken tomorrow too…woot woot!

Okay, so what are you stuffing in your chicken?

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Janet TiminskyMy Design Services
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Janet TiminskyI love being a decorator & coming up with ideas and "embellishments" for my client's homes. Style should be what makes you smile, comfortable,livable & honest. Just remember, sometimes when you change the doorbell you end up changing the roof. ~Janet Timinsky
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