Tuesday, November 26, 2013

How to Butterfly and Stuff Tomato Basil Chicken Breasts

Today's recipe is not only tender, flavourful, and healthy it is also perfect for entertaining because the chicken breasts can be stuffed and breaded hours before a dinner party and popped into the oven an hour before eating.

This would also be a quick and easy make ahead for a weekend dinner. Simply prepare your chicken in the morning and bake when ready.

The flavours of tomato, fresh basil, cheese, and balsamic vinegar in the stuffing beautifully offset tender butterflied chicken breast meat.



Better still, I'm going to share a cooking technique with you to butterfly a boneless chicken breast so that you get it nice and thin.

How to Butterfly a Chicken Breast
  1. Remove a chicken breast from its packaging and place it on a clean cutting board with the top-side down.
  2. Remove the tenderloin with a sharp knife, then place your hand on top of the breast and cut into the thickest part of the chicken, slicing across it about halfway.
  3. Stop cutting, and open the chicken up like a book. Do not cut all the way through the breast unless you'd like to create two thinner pieces of chicken.
  4. Starting at the end of the chicken, about an inch before the edges, run your knife from top to bottom horizontally to make a long slit in the meat. Be careful not to go all the way through. Do this every inch all along the width of the chicken breast which will cause the breast to "open up" like a fan and continue to flatten.
  5. Cover the chicken breast with plastic wrap and flatten more with a meat mallet or rolling pin.
Please enjoy the easy to follow step by step video:




Tomato and Basil Stuffed Chicken Breasts
For printable recipe click HERE

Prep time: 20 minutes
Bake time: 60 minutes
Serves: 4

 Ingredients
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup chopped spinach
  • 1 diced tomato
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 tsp each garlic powder, salt, pepper
Directions
  1. Pre-heat oven to 350
  2. Butterfly four chicken breasts
  3. Combine the tomato, spinach, basil, cheese, olive oil, vinegar, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl and then spoon an even amount in the middle of each chicken breast.
  4. Wrap the breast meat around the stuffing and use small wooden skewers or toothpicks to close. 
  5. Mix the breadcrumbs, cheese, salt, pepper, and garlic
  6. Lightly wet the outsides of the chicken breasts and then generously coat in the breadcrumb mixture using your hands to press the mixture in.
  7. Place the chicken breasts on a baking sheet covered with tinfoil and sprayed with cooking spray.
  8. Bake for one hour at 350.



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Author:

Lyndsay Wells is a professional trainer, writer, and program developer with a passion for food and cooking. She is an award winning recipe developer, and a website ambassador for Kraft Foods Canada. Lyndsay believes cooking should be approachable and easy and has great tips and ideas for putting together sophisticated looking dishes that cooks of all levels can accomplish.

Visit her daily on her blog, The Kitchen Witch or on her YouTube Channel, CHARMED With The Kitchen Witch.

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