Friday, March 9, 2012
Country Ham & Manchego-Stuffed Chicken Breasts
The wedding countdown is on. Less than 2 months away, we're starting to chip at what we have left to do bit by bit. The past week or so, my engagement ring has been at the jeweler's in order to get the bands molded. I almost feel naked without it! Like men are just gawking at me like I'm a single woman. Hehe, I'm pretty vain aren't I?
The end of this quarter of Culinary School is almost upon us. And I'm definitely ready for the break. The middle of the month is also my last day at my day job at the pharmacy. I've worked there for 7 years and it'll be hard to say good-bye. But I know I've been lifelong friends and it won't be good-bye to those people. But it also marks the day I'll be moving on. Really getting on. I'll be able to work at the restaurant more, especially since I'll be switching to Day-time classes for the next quarter. Nights and weekends were alright, but I'd be there double the time. Day-time classes allow me to finished faster (and cook more!) - as well as being able to work at the restaurant more often.
But all in all, everything is great - except for the fact I've cut myself twice in the past two weeks. Once on my pinky (sliced the sucker right open) while cleaning my knife - and the second time was just this past Sunday at work - with a bread knife. Not pretty. And by the time I went to the Immediate Care Center (my stubborn ass went the next day instead of right after work), it was too late to get stitched up. So I'll just have to suffer with the battle wounds for now.
Anyway, this is an easy weeknight dinner that's tasty and quick! Let's get at it!
2 chicken breasts, boneless and skinless
2 pieces of country ham
2 slices of manchego cheese (or cheese of your choice)
1/4 cup flour
salt and pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons grapeseed oil (or olive oil)
Preheat oven to 375 F.
Wrap your chicken breasts loosely in plastic wrap. You want it loose enough that they'll be able to comfortably expand, but not too loose that they're "expand" in little pieces all over your kitchen when you smack the crap out of them.
Take a meat mallet or bottom side of a pan and get to smacking. Flatten the breasts to about 1/4 to 1/2 inch thickness.
Remove plastic wrap from chicken breasts.
Place a piece of country ham on chicken breast.
Place a piece of manchego cheese on top of country ham.
Using butcher's twine or toothpicks (these are more ideal), wrap the chicken breast around the ham and cheese. If I had toothpicks handy, I would have used those, but the twine sufficed.
Place the flour in a shallow dish. Season with salt and pepper. Dredge the chicken in the flour, shaking off any excess flour.
Heat the oil in an oven-proof skillet under medium high heat. Place the chicken in the pan, seam-side up. Cook chicken until you get a nice golden crust, about 3-4 minutes. Flip chicken over and cook for an additional minute.
Transfer chicken to the oven to finish, about 10 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 165F.
Serve chicken with barbecue sauce (or sauce of your choice) and side of your choice. We paired this with macaroni and cheese for a nice comforting meal!