Thursday, 1 September 2011

Chicken breast stuffed with sun-dried tomato, basil and parmesan

We've eaten a lot of salads this summer. Mr Hungry isn't anti-salad as such but I think it's fair to say he is highly suspicious of their lack of carbs and preponderance of greenery. I've therefore been trying out a number of ways to make the idea of salad more appealing. There's a fabulous wild rice and lemon version coming soon but I haven't got a photo of it yet so I'll start with this stuffed chicken.

The salad here is kos, tomato, cucumber,celery and chorizo dressed in a french vinaigrette but ultimately you can serve it with whatever you have to hand. The chicken is tender and complemented perfectly by the sundried tomato and basil inside and the chorizo is - well the chorizo is just because there isn't a salad on the planet that couldn't benefit from a bit of chorizo.


  Stuffed chicken with sundried tomato, basil and parmesan
  • chicken breast with skin
  • 1 jar sun-dried tomatoes, drained well
  • 1 small handful basil leaves
  • 100g grated parmesan
  • S&P to taste
  • 1 tblsp olive oil
  1. Preheat the oven to 200C.
  2. Add the sun-dried tomato and parmesan to a food processor and blend until smooth. Alternatively chop the tomato finely with a knife before adding the parmesan. Chop the basil into thin ribbons and mix into the tomato and basil mixture.
  3. Remove the fillet from the back of the chicken breast and keep to one side.
  4. (See images below) With a sharp knife carefully score a vertical line from the top of the fillet to the bottom without going all the way through. Now slice sideways from the central cut in order to open the breast up into wings. Do the same on the opposite side so that you have one wing on the left and one on the right. You are aiming for a pouch that will hold the filling. Beware not to slice too deep. If you go through to the outside of the flesh the filling will seep out when cooking.
  5. Now spoon the filling into the centre of the opened out breast in a line from the top of the breast to the bottom. It should be about 1cm in depth and 1cm in widthlace the discarded fillet on top of the filling and then carefully fold the wings over the fillet to close the pouch.
  6. Place the breasts, skin-side-up on a non-stick oven tray, or on a parchment covered tray. Season and sprinkle lightly with oil and bake for 15 -20 mins on 200C until firm to touch or 75C at the core (if you have  a digital probe).




Remove the fillet (it should just pull off so you don't need to cut it) and score a line down the centre of the breast from the top to the bottom. Do not cut all the way through.

Slice sideways from the central cut in order to open the breast up into wings, then repeat on the right hand side. This should give you a perfectly innocent looking pouch. It does not look rude. Honestly? You disgust me.


Spoon the filling into the centre of the opened out breast in a line from the top of the breast to the bottom. It should be about 1cm in depth and 1cm in widthlace the discarded fillet on top of the filling and then carefully fold the wings over the fillet to close the pouch.


When you slice the chicken you should get little elongated discs of filling in each slice. Serve with the salad of your choice. The chicken skin keeps the flesh beautifully moist as it bakes. It's also delicious on a bed of puy lentils.



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