Ricotta, Spinach, and Sun-Dried Tomato-Stuffed Chicken

recipe
Chicken stuffed with ricotta, spinach, and sun-dried tomatoes is about as flavorful as chicken night gets.

Yield:

4 servings (serving size: 1 stuffed breast half)

Recipe from

Nutritional Information

Calories 377
Caloriesfromfat 26 %
Fat 10.8 g
Satfat 4.7 g
Monofat 3.1 g
Polyfat 0.9 g
Protein 54.8 g
Carbohydrate 12.6 g
Fiber 3.2 g
Cholesterol 122 mg
Iron 3.4 mg
Sodium 814 mg
Calcium 473 mg

Ingredients

2 cups boiling water
10 sun-dried tomatoes, packed without oil
1 1/2 teaspoons extravirgin olive oil
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 (10-ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed, drained, and squeezed dry
3/4 cup (3 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
2/3 cup fat-free ricotta cheese
1/4 cup (1 ounce) grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
1/4 teaspoon black pepper, divided
4 (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
3 quarts water

Preparation

Combine boiling water and sun-dried tomatoes in a bowl; let stand 30 minutes or until soft. Drain and chop.

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion, oregano, and garlic; cook 3 minutes or until onion is tender, stirring occasionally. Add spinach; cook 3 minutes or until liquid almost evaporates. Add tomatoes; cook 1 minute. Place spinach mixture in a bowl; cool 5 minutes. Stir in cheeses, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper.

Slice each breast half lengthwise, cutting to, but not through, other side. Open halves, laying breast flat. Place each breast half between 2 sheets of heavy-duty plastic wrap; pound to 1/4-inch thickness using a meat mallet or small heavy skillet. Sprinkle chicken with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and remaining 1/8 teaspoon pepper.

Divide spinach mixture into 4 equal portions; spoon each down center of each breast half, leaving a 1/2-inch border at each end. Fold breast sides over filling.

Place a 2-foot-long sheet of heavy-duty plastic wrap on a work surface with 1 long side hanging over the counter's edge by 2 inches. Place a stuffed breast half, seam side down, on the end farthest from you, and tightly roll the chicken toward you, jelly-roll fashion. Twist the ends in opposite directions to form a cylinder. Tie plastic wrap in tight knots against the chicken on each end. Trim off excess wrap close to the knots. Place a second 2-foot-long sheet of heavy-duty plastic wrap on the work surface; place rolled chicken on wrap, and repeat procedure. Repeat with remaining breast halves.

Bring 3 quarts water to a boil in a large stockpot; add chicken. Simmer 15 minutes (do not boil), turning occasionally. Remove from water, and let stand 10 minutes before unwrapping and cutting into 1/2-inch-thick slices.

Wine note: In matching this dish with wine, the tomatoes, spinach, garlic, and cheeses are more important factors than the mild-flavored chicken. A terrific match for this savory lineup is the famous Italian light red wine Chianti Classico, especially riservas. Great producers include Querciabella, Ruffino, and Antinori. -Karen MacNeil

Note:

David Bonom,

June 2006
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