I currently live in Charlotte, NC and after spending 7 years as a personal chef and caterer, I am now happy to share my love of cooking with friends and family. My heart is in the kitchen, but my soul is in the stars!

Which Came First...The Chicken or the Stuffing?

Chicken is one of those highly versatile foods as there are literally a zillion +1 ways you can prepare it within any category:

Grill it.
Bake it.
Fry it.
Saute it.
Stuff it.

You can be so creative with marinades and dipping sauces and the like, but my creative strengths lie in the "Stuff it" category.  

I've stuffed chicken and smothered it with crab meat (the story of which always makes me laugh when I think back on it) and I've even crammed fruit into a bird.  There are so many other things that I've stuffed a chicken breast with and I can't believe I haven't yet shared them with you here, mostly because it's a last minute thing of figuring out what in the fridge needs to be used up and makes a good combination and there's no real recipe per se.  Today's offering is no exception to that rule.

I found myself with an overload of Boursin® Cheese thanks to a BOGO sale at my beloved Harris Teeter a few weeks ago and I also rustled up a jar of roasted red bell peppers left over from another kitchen project.  I threw in some fresh sage leaves and some par-cooked bacon and it all made for one tasty dinner.  I've discovered that I prefer using thin cutlets when stuffing simply because a regular chicken breast seems to be a ratio of too much chicken vs. stuffing once it's all rolled up (see how the chicken seems to be a little too top-heavy in this photo?).    I've been known to slice a regular breast in half and pound it out even a little thinner if that's all I have on hand.   

Try your hand at creative stuffings and let me know what combinations you come up with!

Boursin Stuffed Chicken Breasts

4 chicken breast cutlets
1 package Boursin® Cheese
4 slices par-cooked bacon (by par-cooked, I mean partially cooked. Don't cook it until it's crisp and brittle. You want it to be a little pliable so you can roll it up and it will continue to cook while the chicken is baking.)
4 to 8 fresh sage leaves
4 strips of roasted red bell peppers
Seasonings of your choice
Splash of white wine or chicken broth

Spread 1/4 of the Boursin Cheese generously on each chicken breast. Add a strip of bacon, roasted red bell pepper and one or two fresh sage leaves. Roll chicken up into a bundle and secure with toothpicks. Season bundles with your choice of seasoning blend (I usually have one of those premixed poultry seasonings on hand but just salt and freshly ground pepper work fine too).

Add a tablespoon or so oil in a skillet and heat over medium-high heat. Sear chicken on all sides until golden brown. Add about 3/4 cup or so of liquid (white wine or broth) and deglaze the pan. Remove chicken and liquid from skillet and place into a baking dish.

Bake chicken in oven preheated to 350 degrees for about 20 to 30 minutes.

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