Chicken Cordon Bleu, Stuffed Chicken with Ham and Cheese

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This one of my favorite ways for making chicken breasts when wanting a fancy presentation or having extra time for preparation. The extra effort is well worth it, as family or guests always express "oohs and ahhs."

The flavors of chicken, ham and Swiss cheese offer mouth watering goodness.

Large breasts are best for stuffing. I find that one stuffed breast is huge, enough to serve two people - just cut in half width-wise.  A 6 ounce breast stuffed with ham an cheese amounts to 10 ounces, and cut in half provides an ample 5 ounce serving.

I make 4, and for the two of us bake one, then freeze the rest to have on hand for another meal.

I've done Cordon Bleu two ways: pounding chicken breasts, topping with ham and cheese, then rolling up; or making a slit or pocket into the breast, then rolling up ham around cheese and stuffing them. This rolling up method is the best, as none of the stuffing seeps out of the  pocket.  It stays inside.

Leftover ham on hand is always on hand in my freezer,  but not deli ham.  I always have deli turkey on hand, so decided to roll diced ham and strips of cheese in the deli turkey for this recipe.

Cordon Bleu photo null_zps9c12fd04.jpgChicken Cordon Bleu
  • 4 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts, about 5 to 6 oz.
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • 8 oz. thinly sliced Swiss cheese or shredded Swiss cheese
  • 8 oz. thinly sliced ham or
  •      thinly sliced deli turkey and 8 oz.diced ham
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup seasoned dried breadcrumbs
  • 3 Tabs. olive oil, butter or butter spray.
With a sharp paring knife, make about a 2-3-inch long slit into the breast to form a deep pocket inside the chicken breast starting on the thick side. Work the knife into and slice towards the back and sides, being careful not to poke or slice into back or sides.  The idea is to make a deep pocket to stuff, but keeping the entry slice small enough so while cooking ingredients don't fall out. Salt and pepper and set aside.

Cordon Bleu photo null_zpsed3b8bb2.jpgCordon Bleu photo null_zpse04acec3.jpgTo stuff the chicken, lay 8 deli ham slices flat and top with 1 oz. of cheese and roll up tightly or take deli turkey and top with cheese and divided diced ham and roll up tightly.
  • Stuff each breast with 2 rolls. Insert first one length-wise and push to back of pocket, then insert second roll, slightly pinch opening closed. Transfer chicken to plate, cover with plastic wrap, then refrigerate for 20 minutes or more.
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    Prepare Coating:  Place one dish with flour, one with beaten eggs, and one with season bread crumbs. One at a time, coat chicken lightly with flour, dip into egg mixture, then coat with crumbs, pressing chicken into crumbs so they adhere all over.  They can then be refrigerated until ready to bake, or baked immediately.

    Preheat oven to 350. Place chicken on a baking sheet. Brush or spray tops and sides with olive oil, butter or spray coating.  Bake on middle rack golden brown about 30 to 35 minutes.. Internal temperature should be 160 degrees. Transfer to cutting board or plate and cover.  Let rest 5 minutes before serving. Cut in half. Serves 8.

    Estimated cost: $9.00 or less; $1.12 a serving or less.

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