Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Not your same old bird.

The Diva understands that chicken is for many the go-to weeknight meal: its cheap, cooks fast and tastes like, well...chicken. But it can get boring very fast. The routine is the same: thaw out a breast or thigh, sprinkle with salt and pepper, then bake or grill until cooked. If you're feeling particularly ambitious, maybe a side of broccoli or Minute rice.

Don't deny it, we've all been there. Snore.

Well boys and girls, it's time for a variation on a theme...and you can still go wild with the side of broccoli.

Caramelized Onion and Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken Breasts

2 chicken breasts (or cutlets)
4 ounces goat cheese, at room temperature
1 small onion, sliced thin
2 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons parsley, chopped fine
salt and pepper to taste
butcher's twine or toothpicks

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

In a small saute pan, heat butter and 1 tablespoon of oil over low heat until melted. Add onion, salt and pepper and, stirring occasionally, cook on low until onions turn translucent and begin to caramelize. This can take anywhere from 10-15 minutes depending on the heat of your stove. Remove from heat.

If using chicken breasts, place each between layers of plastic wrap and pound them out (using a meat tenderizer, rolling pin, whatever) to approximately 1/4 inch thick (If using cutlets, just make sure they are even in thickness!).

In a small bowl, combine onions, parsley and goat cheese and mix well. Be sure to taste this mixture and add additional salt and pepper as needed.

To assemble, divide the onion mixture between each chicken breast and spread it out evenly. Slowly roll up the chicken breast and fasten with toothpicks or butcher's twine. Season the outside of the chicken with salt and pepper.

In the same saute pan you used for the onions, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil over medium high heat. Sear the chicken on each side. Don't rush this step! The chicken will let you know when it's time to flip, and release easily from the pan. If it's giving you trouble, just relax and give it another minute before trying again.

If you're using a stainless steel or oven safe pan, transfer the pan to the oven and let the chicken cook through. Cooking time will depend on the size of your breasts (insert snickering giggles here...you know you want to). Ahem, er...if you have a meat thermometer, feel free to use it.

When the chicken is cooked through, slice and enjoy!

Fabulous Feasting,
The Diva.

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Fabulous Feasting,
The Diva.