If you haven’t decided on a main course yet for Christmas dinner, or, if you have several holiday parties and don’t want to serve the same meal twice, here’s a recipe to consider. Chicken breasts stuffed with a savory combination of herbs, cheeses, and mushrooms. These are easy to prepare, but are sure to impress your guests. I like to make these the night before, then top with bread crumbs and bake right before dinner. This recipe serves 4 – 6, and can easily be doubled.
Mushroom and Herbed Cheese Stuffed Chicken Breasts
- 4 Chicken Breasts – sliced lengthwise and pounded thin (about 1/4 inch)
- 8 oz. White Button or “Baby Bella” Mushrooms – cleaned and sliced
- 1 – 2 tablespoons Butter
- 1/4 cup mild Onion – diced
- 3 Garlic Cloves – minced
- 1 package Garlic and Herb Cheese Spread (i.e. – Boursin, Rondele, Alouette)
- 1/2 cup shredded Mozzarella
- 1/4 teaspoon dried Thyme
- 1/2 cup unseasoned Panko Bread Crumbs
- 1/2 cup good quality Olive Oil
- Salt and Pepper
If you plan on eating these the same day you prepare them, preheat oven to 375. Begin by sautéing mushrooms and onion with butter over medium-high heat, and season with salt and pepper. When mushrooms start to caramelize, add 1/2 of the minced garlic and the dried thyme, reduce heat to low, and cook for 5 more minutes. While mushrooms are cooking, prepare a 9×13 baking pan by oiling lightly, or spraying with non-stick cooking spray. Prepare a station for assembling the chicken, this can be as simple as a separate plate, but the goal is to reduce cross contamination by avoiding double dipping into the filling. When the mushroom mixture has finished cooking, turn heat source off, add the two cheeses and mix well. Now, place a piece of chicken onto the work station facing the same direction as your hand (so, lengthwise, with the wide section at the bottom, and narrow end at the top), drop about two tablespoons of filling onto the center of the chicken and, using a different utensil, spread it into an even layer on 2/3 of the chicken (in other words – don’t put the filling on the top 1/3 of the chicken. Try not to spread the mixture all the way to the edges, it will melt a bit when baking and you can loose a lot of filling that way. Now, starting at the bottom, roll the chicken upwards and place in the baking pan with the seam side down (the narrow point on the bottom). When all chicken pieces have been filled, and you are ready to bake them, mix the olive oil with the remaining minced garlic in a small bowl. Sprinkle the tops of the rolls with the unseasoned bread crumbs and drizzle the olive oil and garlic over the top, season with salt and pepper. Place in a pre-heated 375 degree oven. Bake for 30 – 40 minutes, or until chicken is no longer pink.