Oh my! Choosing a recipe for today was not easy. First, I am waaaay behind on my writing so I am writing this right here and right now just for you. I don’t do this for just anyone, y’know lol! Don’t worry, I have lots of recipes to share with you scribbled away in pink ink in my pink Cork and Spoon notebook (Think pink, October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month! Thought I’d throw that in since this is our first post for October). Unfortunately, I haven’t written anything about those recipes yet and who wants to read just a recipe? Not me! Second, the weather has been teasing my palate. Fall came…and then it disappeared (For my work friends, I think you remember melting outside with me last Monday at the induction ceremony). Then fall came back with a vengeance after temperatures plummeted 20 degrees as the weekend rolled in. Now this week we’re supposed to be in the 70’s and creeping close to 80 by the weekend. Sheesh! Come on, I’m ready for fall!
So! Since the weather wants to stay a tease for another week or so, I decided to post this stuffed chicken recipe (I have two). It’s hearty enough for the cooler temps, but not too heavy for the warmer days. It’s just right for now until Mother Nature makes up her mind.
Ricotta Stuffed Chicken
- 2 Boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- I cup mixed greens
Ingredients for the Marinade:
- 2 tbsp Olive oil
- 1 Lemon, juiced
- 1 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
- ½ cup Marsala Wine*
- ¼ cup Water
- 2 large Garlic cloves, smashed
- 1 tbsp Rosemary
- 2 tbsp Brown Sugar
Ingredients for the Ricotta Stuffing:
- ½ cup Ricotta cheese
- 1 tsp parsley, chopped
- 1 tsp basil, chiffonaded (http://youtu.be/sh3C12JLs_I)
- 1 large glove garlic, smashed into a paste or finely chopped
Ingredients for the Sauce:
- 2 tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 large tomato, diced
- 1 shallot, thinly sliced
- 1 clove garlic, chopped
- ¼ cup chicken broth
- ¼ cup Marsala wine*
- 1 tbsp basil
- 1 tbsp parsley
- 2 tbsp half and half or cream
*If you are unable to locate a bottle of Marsala, the next best substitute is a cream sherry. Of course, if you have a bottle of dry white wine already open, feel free to use it instead. Just keep in mind that the white wine will create a different flavor.
- Place chicken breasts in a large bowl or container and add all marinade ingredients.
- Carefully stir chicken in container to help mix ingredients
- Cover and let sit for at least an hour. Overnight is best
Stuffing the Chicken Breasts:
- Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
- In a small bowl, mix ricotta with 1 tsp chopped parsley, 1 tsp
chiffonaded basil, and 1 chopped garlic clove
- Season with salt and pepper to taste
- Set ricotta mixture aside and remove chicken breasts from marinade
- With a sharp knife, cut horizontally into chicken breasts (almost like
butterflying) to create a pocket
- Stuff the ricotta mixture into the cut chicken breasts
- Use a toothpick to secure the pocket and help keep the ricotta mixture in place
- Transfer chicken breasts to baking dish that has been greased with olive oil and bake in oven for 45-60 minutes or until completely cooked.
- Turn broiler on to brown the chicken, about two minutes, but keep an eye on it and adjust as needed.
- About 10 minutes before the chicken is done, go ahead and begin on the sauce
- Drizzle olive oil in a large pan and heat over medium.
- Sauté garlic and shallots until shallots turn translucent
- Slowly pour in Marsala wine and the chicken broth as you stir
- Bring to a low boil
- Add diced tomatoes, and the remaining basil and parsley.
- Stirring occasionally, bring sauce back to a low boil
- Reduce heat to medium and add half and half (or cream) and stir
- Allow sauce to simmer and thicken.
(To help thicken sauce, sprinkle and whisk in flour)
Serve chicken breasts over a bed of greens and topped with sauce. On the side, add your choice of vegetables and starches. I chose mushroom pierogis, but baked potatoes, wild rice, or garlic couscous are also good accompaniments.