Italian Stuffed Chicken

by Michele Pesula Kuegler | May 12th, 2009 | Main Dishes, Recipes
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italian-stuffed-chickenMy husband and I cook differently.  He tends to choose his ingredients in a more spontaneous manner, while I make a plan of what I will use.  I prefer to measure ingredients, and he likes to approximate.  He adds many spices to dishes, while I choose one or two to flavor my creation.

Nonetheless, or maybe because of our different approaches, we work together well while cooking.  However, this past Sunday I merely was a spectator, as it was Mother’s Day.  While I didn’t want to give the appearance that I was being a critic, I wanted to watch him make our dinner.  Otherwise, I knew I wouldn’t have measurements when I wrote this recipe.  (With that being said, all measurements are approximate because, as noted above, he doesn’t measure.  So, when he added an ingredient, I made my best judgment as to how much it was.)

I must confess that when I initially saw the zucchini post-blending, I wondered how it would work in this dish.  However, as he added ingredients, I could see that an amazing filling was being created.  I was able to sneak a tiny taste and was assured that not only did it look good, it was filled with great flavors.  As his “recipe” made more than was needed to fill the chicken breasts, the remaining filling was heated and served as a sauce to top the chicken.

Served with roasted butternut squash and blanched green beans, it was the perfect Mother’s Day dinner.  What a wonderful treat for me from the man I love.

Italian Stuffed Chicken


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Ingredients
  1. 1 zucchini, ends removed
  2. 1 medium onion, caramelized
  3. 3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  4. 1/2 cup fresh Parmesan, grated
  5. 20 pepperoni slices, diced
  6. 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella
  7. 2 tsp. Italian seasoning
  8. 1/2 tsp. paprika
  9. 1 tsp. garlic salt
  10. 4 chicken breasts, pounded thin
  11. 1 egg
  12. 1/2 cup panko
  13. 1/2 cup pecans, ground
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350. Place zucchini in a blender, and puree.
  2. Pour zucchini into a large bowl. Add caramelized onions, cheddar, parmesan, pepperoni, mozzarella, and seasonings.
  3. Mix well. Using half of the mixture, divide among chicken breasts, spreading over the top of each. Starting at narrow end, roll chicken, and secure with a toothpick.
  4. In a small bowl, whisk egg. In a second small bowl, combine panko and pecans. Dip one rolled chicken breast in egg, coating all sides.
  5. Then place into panko-pecan mixture, again coating all sides.
  6. Place into a baking dish coated with nonstick cooking spray. Repeat with 3 remaining chicken breasts.
  7. Bake for 25 minutes, uncovered.
  8. Cover with foil, and cook for another 20 minutes, or until chicken is cooked thoroughly.
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