Photo: Randy Mayor; Styling: Cindy Barr
Yield
4 servings (serving size: 1 chicken breast half and 1 tablespoon pan juice)

Serve with creamy polenta and garlicky broccoli rabe sautéed in olive oil. Guanciale is a lean, full-flavored Italian pork product. Although it contains less fat than either, it's similar to pancetta or cured bacon--which you can substitute if you can't find guanciale. And Gorgonzola is Italy's most famous blue cheese, but any blue cheese will work in this dish.

How to Make It

Step 1

Preheat oven to 400°.

Step 2

Cook guanciale in a large ovenproof skillet over medium heat 10 minutes or until crisp, stirring frequently; remove from pan using a slotted spoon. Combine guanciale, 1 tablespoon drippings, cheese, tomatoes, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a small bowl, stirring well.

Step 3

Cut a horizontal slit through thickest portion of each chicken breast half to form a pocket. Stuff 2 tablespoons cheese mixture into each pocket; secure with a wooden pick. Sprinkle both sides of chicken evenly with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper.

Step 4

Wipe pan clean with paper towels. Return pan to medium-high heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add chicken; sauté 4 minutes. Turn chicken over. Place pan in oven; bake at 400° for 8 minutes or until chicken is done. Let stand 5 minutes. Discard wooden picks. Cut chicken diagonally into 1/2-inch-thick slices, if desired. Serve with pan juices.

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