Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Carciofo Chicken (Artichoke)

I experimented today with some loose ingredients and came up with this recipe today. Try it out and let me know if you liked it as much as I did!

Carciofo Chicken (4 servings)
You will need the tools shown in this picture below, as well ad the ingredients:
4 Chicken Breasts, thin sliced.
1 bunch of fresh spinach
1 jar or can of artichoke hearts
1 teaspoon of crushed garlic
Pomodorini (Cherry Tomatoes) about 1 1/2 cup
Ciliegine size fresh mozzarella, about 1 1/2 cup, or as many as you would like.
Pinot Grigio, about  2 cups
Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Sea Salt to taste.

Let's Begin to Cook....

1. Use a meat tenderizer to pound the chicken breast flat, even and thin. Be careful not to break them apart.

2. Chop up about less than a quarter of the bunch of fresh spinach.
3. Chop up about 4 artichoke hearts.
4. Quarter about 10 Pomodorini
5. Combine spinach, artichokes and pomodorini is a bowl, add about a quarter cup EVOO, and a pinch of salt, or more if you prefer extra salt. Add half your crushed garlic. Use tongs to toss ingredients together well.
6. One by one, lay each chicken breast flat, set two fresh Mozzarella balls, (or as much that is equivalent to two ciliegine) and a generous amount of the artichoke mixture.
7. Roll the chicken breast and use butchers twine to secure them shut.
8. Place rolled breasts in a foil lined pan, that has been sprayed with a nonstick spray.
9. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F, and set the pan aside.

10. Lightly coat the bottom of a sauce pain in EVOO, add the rest of your crushed garlic. Let the garlic begin to fry a bit before lifting the pan away from the heat, and adding in your white wine. Let the mixture heat up then add in the rest of your artichokes, and pomodorini. Make sure you half halved or quartered all the pomodorini. Using a wooden cooking spoon, smash down the artichoke hearts until they separate into pieces. Slowly add in the rest of the bunch of spinach and stir in, until it reduces, then keep adding more. This should happen fairly quickly. DO NOT OVERCOOK. Its important this process only takes a couple minutes, so the spinach is no overcooked in this step. Once the spinach is reduce (wet) in the mixture, pull off the heat. Add a bit more wine.

11. Top the raw rolled breasts with the artichoke mixture and your extra ciliegine. Pour the wine and rest of the mixture around the breasts, and cover the pan with foil. So the cheese does not stick to the cheese, make sure the foil is tented, like in the picture above.
12. But the pan on the middle rack in your preheated oven. Leave for about an hour, but because all ovens are different, yours could take less or more time. You will need to spoon the wine on top the breasts to baste them, every 15 minutes, so you can keep your eye on how they are cooking and test them with a meat thermometer.
13. Once done, remove the pan, and foil. Use the tongs to rotate the breasts and kitchen scissors to snip the twine and and pull it COMPLETELY free from the chicken.
14. Serve.

15. The last step, Enjoy :)

This dish goes very well with a white wine, and best served after a light pasta.

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