Prep 30 mins
Cook 20 mins
An Italian Recipe developed for World Tour and Recipe Swap contest, September, 2005. If you cannot purchase chipolline onions locally, you may use Shallots
- 4 chicken breasts
- 1 lb ground chicken
- 6 garlic cloves, chopped fine
- 8 chipolline onions, chopped fine
- 1 portabella mushroom, chopped fine
- 1⁄4 cup flat-leaf Italian parsley, chopped fine
- 2 tablespoons fresh oregano, chopped fine
- 1⁄2 cup fresh spinach, lightly steamed
- 1⁄8 teaspoon black pepper, from the mill
- 4 slices provolone cheese
- 1⁄4 cup parmesan cheese, grated
- 1⁄4 cup olive oil
For the sauce
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1⁄2 cup mascarpone cheese
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 1⁄4 cup fresh basil, chopped fine
- With your mallet or tenderizer, pound chicken breasts to about 1/2 inch thick; set aside until ready to use.
- Clarify sweet chipolline onions in a little oil; remove from pan and set aside until ready to use.
- Cook garlic until just golden in colour; remove from pan and set aside with the onions.
- Cook chopped mushrooms until liquid dissipates, stirring constantly to prevent burning. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Brown ground chicken, using about 2 tbsp oil, add oil as required.
- To the ground chicken add onions, garlic, mushrooms, parsley, oregano and black pepper to taste.
- Stir constantly for 5 or 6 minutes, to blend flavours.
- Steam spinach until just wilted; remove from pan and squeeze dry.
- Chop spinach, coarse; add parmesan cheese, and mix together.
- Divide ground chicken mixture evenly, and spoon onto one half of each flattened chicken breasts.
- Divide spinach mixture evenly, and spoon over chicken mixture.
- Top the mixture(s) with a slice of provalone.
- Fold the other half of chicken breast over the mixture(s), and press the edges together to form a pouch.
- Brown each pouch on both sides; reduce heat, cover pan and continue cooking until done; 10-12 minutes.
- Remove cooked chicken to plates and spoon sauce over pouches. Serve hot with vegetables or pasta (your choice).
- For the sauce: Melt butter in a pan
- Add corn starch, stirring constantly with your whisk, to blend.
- Add mascarpone cheese.
- Continue to stir with your whisk while slowly adding dry white wine.
- When cheese is blended thoroughly with the mixture, add fresh basil.
- Mix well and spoon sauce over finished chicken breasts.
Overall, a pretty good dish... good recipe for a festive occasion.
It did take me a good two hours to prepare -- more time than the recipe states -- so I knocked it off half a point for that.
I used mixed gourmet mushrooms rather than the portabella because the latter had gone bad by the time I got around to making this recipe (!), but otherwise I followed the recipe to the letter. To save a little money, if I make this recipe again, I'd probably just use regular cream cheese rather than mascarpone. I'd also be a little more careful with the wine... this time around, the sauce seemed a little too winey to me, so I also knocked off half a point for that. (Husband and daughter liked it, though. Try and taste is the best advice I can give on that one, I guess ;)
I would have given this recipe 5 stars but the sauce kinda ruined it for me. It had gotten way too thick and there was far too much basil for me. I am going to try this again, because I really like a basic cream sauce to use with pork, fish, & chicken. I will be using arrowroot instead of corn starch, this will keep it from thickening after it's done cooking and I won't use near as much basil, maybe 1/4 of it. I believe this will make it a little better.
A word of caution if you make this dish - you need big breasts! I had too much filling as mine were rather small. Aside from scaling for 2 servings, I used shallots & dried oregano ...... otherwise, I followed the recipe..... served with rice & steamed spinach. The sauce was very good; I would double the amount next time. Thanx ER!