Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Stuffed Chicken Rolls

These delicious Italian chicken rolls are simple to make, but sophisticated enough to serve at a dinner party, especially if you arrange slices on a bed of tagliatelle tossed with fried wild mushrooms. Recipe serves 4.


2 tablespoons butter
1 garlic clove, chopped
1 1/4 cups cooked white long grain rice
3 tablespoons ricotta cheese
2 teaspoons chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
1 teaspoon chopped fresh tarragon
4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
3-4 slices Parma ham
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup white wine
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Fresh flat leaf parsley sprigs, to garnish
Cooked tagliatelle and sauteed mushrooms, to serve (optional)


1. Preheat the over to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C). Melt about 2 teaspoons of the butter in a small pan and fry the garlic for a few seconds without browning. Spoon into a bowl.
2. Add the rice, ricotta, parsley and tarragon and season with salt and pepper. Stir to mix.
3. Place each chicken breast in turn between two sheets of clear plastic film and flatten by beating lightly, but firmly, with a rolling pin.
4. Divide the slices of Parma ham between the chicken breasts, trimming the ham to fit, if necessary.
5. Place a spoonful of the rice stuffing at the wider end of each ham-topped breast. Roll up carefully and tie in place with cooking string or secure with a cocktail stick.
6. Heat the oil and the remaining butter in a frying pan and lightly fry the chicken rolls until browned on all sides. Place side by side in a shallow baking dish and pour over the white wine.
7. Cover the dish with greaseproof paper and cook in the oven for 30-35 minutes until the chicken is tender.
8. Cut the rolls into slices and serve on a bed of tagliatelle with sauteed mushrooms and a generous grinding of black pepper, if you like. Garnish with sprigs of flat leaf parsley.

Tip: Risotto rice could be used in place of white long grain rice in this dish. Risotto rice has a different consistency to long grain, and will make a much denser stuffing for the chicken rolls.

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