Usually we do like to eat chicken as Hassle Free Chicken curry and / or Roasted Chicken , but sometimes just out of sheer eagerness and being experimental in nature, I try to explore new dimensions in fixing up chicken. Well, then comes this stuffed chicken breast recipe, which we prepared way back during one of the days of long winter holidays. I kept reminding myself that I have to post this recipe and must clear my drafts at least before New Year, but somehow it didn’t work out.
Now with this, comes to an assumption about festive foods. I must add to that, I really don’t know if you think these recipes should always tag along during Christmas and New Year celebrations or for that matter any other celebrations. But to me whenever you feel like celebrating, I would say go ahead, who’s stopping you to celebrate as celebrations don’t need any reasons. It just what you feel in your heart when you do feel celebrating. Right?
And celebrations mean good food and in company of your loved and near ones even if it’s not a usual festive day or for that matter festive season.
Couscous and Dried fruits stuffed Roasted Chicken Breast
Recipe requirements ( serves- 3-4 people)
- 2 large chicken breast
- For the seasoning of chicken breasts pieces
- ½ tsp of salt+1 tsp of black pepper
- For the stuffing
- ½ cup of couscous
- ½ cup of assorted mixture of dried fruits
- 1/2 tsp of red pepper powder
- 1 tsp of cinnamon powder
- Salt as per taste
- 1 cup of water to cook couscous
- For the sauce
- 3-4 tbs of butter
- 3-4 tbs of cherry jam
- 1 tsp of cinnamon powder
- 1 tsp of nutmeg powder
- And 3-4 tsp of dried herbs
- M/W a cup of water at high for 1 mint .Add red pepper powder and cinnamon powder in the cup and stir well .This gives a nice cinnamon flavor to the cooked couscous and also the required amount of spiciness.And then add in the couscous into it. Cover it and let it sit there about half an hour. Cous cous will tend to swell out absorbing the water. It will make double the amount of cous cous you have soaked in water.
- Clean the chicken breast pieces in water and then pat them dry with kitchen towel.
- Now cut into 3 equal pieces depending on the size and weight of chicken breast pieces. Now place one piece in greaseproof paper, roll over from the opposite corner of greaseproof paper covering over the chicken breast piece.
- Now gently start pounding/patting the chicken pieces, make sure the strokes are gentle otherwise the tender chicken breast meat will tear out. Tip- you can use rolling pin to gently pound the chicken pieces.
- Sprinkle salt and black pepper. Keep aside.
- Meanwhile prepare the sauce and put the oven to preheat, preheat oven at 175 deg C.
- Soak about 6 toothpicks in water, this makes them soft, so easy to work with them.
- Melt in butter and jam in a melting pot, adjust salt if required, then add cinnamon powder+nutmeg powder. Add in about a cup of water. This will make it thin. Cook it for 5-8 mints till all gets well mixed up.Make sure the sauce don't get burnt.
- Now in a mixing bowl, Mix in assorted dried fruit mix + cooked couscous. Taste for salt. Now this mixture is sweet and savory both, as couscous lends the savory part and dried fruit mixture gives a sweet texture. How ever if you think you may skip any one and make savory filling or sweet filling as well.
- Now place about 2 tsp of stuffing mixture on one side. Start rolling gently from that side, and when you have reached the other end with the help of toothpicks, seal the gaps and hook it well. You can alternately use thread for sealing the sides. Make other rolls similarly.
- Place aluminum foil/greaseproof paper over a roasting tray. Line all the rolled and stuffed chicken breast neatly.
- Sprinkle generously dried mixed herbs over each stuffed chicken breast.
- Transfer them in the oven. Bake them for 10 mints at 175 deg C.Take them out, drizzle generously the jam butter sauce over it.
- Transfer again to the oven and bake another 10 -15 mints at 175 deg C.Take out when done.Again drizzle the sauce generously.Reserve some sauce for serving with the stuffed chicken.
- Serve and enjoy.
- You can either make savory or sweet filling. You can use only cous cous for savory stuffing or the dried fruit mixture for the sweet filling. The recipe above is a mixture of savory and sweet filling which we liked a lot.
- You can use cheddar cheese+ finely chopped mushroom for the stuffing as well. That is another way stuffed chicken breast can be made.
- Another sauce which goes well with this recipe is cranberry sauce.Use fresh cranberries in place of cherry jam and while cooking up the sauce, add brown sugar or caster sugar to it.Cranberries are sour in taste so requires proper sweetness and texture which brown sugar tends to add.
Happy Cooking Friends