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Sesame-Coated Chicken Stuffed with Ricotta and Spinach

Yield 6 servings (serving size: 1 chicken roll and about 1/2 cup sauce)
Vary the greens used in the stuffing, depending on your mood and preference. For an earthier flavor, try a combination of arugula and escarole instead of spinach.

Ingredients

  • Chicken:
  • 2 (6-ounce) packages prewashed baby spinach
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) Homemade Ricotta Cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt, divided
  • Dash of freshly grated nutmeg
  • 6 (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 tablespoon extravirgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • Sauce:
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped tomato
  • 2/3 cup thinly sliced fresh basil
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
  • 1 teaspoon extravirgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated lemon rind
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

Nutrition Information

  • calories 348
  • caloriesfromfat 29 %
  • fat 11.1 g
  • satfat 3.8 g
  • monofat 4.6 g
  • polyfat 1.8 g
  • protein 49.6 g
  • carbohydrate 12.3 g
  • fiber 4.1 g
  • cholesterol 114 mg
  • iron 3.6 mg
  • sodium 480 mg
  • calcium 245 mg

How to Make It

  1. Preheat oven to 450°.

  2. To prepare chicken, heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add spinach to pan; cook 5 minutes or until spinach begins to wilt, stirring frequently. Drain spinach in a colander, pressing until barely moist. Place spinach on a cutting board; finely chop. Place spinach in a medium bowl. Add Homemade Ricotta Cheese, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, 1/8 teaspoon salt, and nutmeg; stir well to combine.

  3. Place each chicken breast half between 2 sheets of heavy-duty plastic wrap; pound to 1/4-inch thickness using a meat mallet or rolling pin. Spread each chicken breast half with 1/4 cup ricotta mixture, leaving a 1/4-inch border. Starting with a short side, roll up each chicken breast half jelly-roll fashion. Place rolls, seam sides down, in a 13 x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle remaining 1/4 teaspoon black pepper and 1/8 teaspoon salt evenly over rolls; drizzle rolls evenly with 1 tablespoon olive oil. Sprinkle rolls with sesame seeds, pressing gently to adhere. Bake at 450° for 20 minutes or until chicken is done.

  4. To prepare sauce, combine chopped tomato and remaining ingredients, stirring gently. Serve with chicken.