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Antipasto-Stuffed Chicken Breasts

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Serves four.

This filling tastes remarkably like a classic Italian restaurant pizza topping. 

For the filling:
  • 1-1/2 cups grated whole-milk mozzarella (6  ounces)
  • 3 tablespoons chopped oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons chopped pitted Kalamata olives
  • 1/4 cup very finely diced salami
  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano leaves
  • Freshly ground black pepper
For the chicken:
  • 4 large boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (8 to 9 oz. each)
  • 3/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1-1/2 cups fresh breadcrumbs
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2/3 cup olive oil
Make the filling:

In a small bowl, mix the mozzarella, sun-dried tomatoes, olives, salami, Parmigiano, oregano, and a few grinds of pepper.

Stuff and cook the chicken:

If the chicken breasts have tenderloins, remove them. Trim, rinse, and pat the breasts dry.

Make a pocket on the thicker side of each breast. Using a sharp boning or utility knife, cut into the breast about 1/2 inch from one end. Create a pocket, slicing to within about 1/4 inch of the other side.

Antipasto-Stuffed Chicken Breasts Recipe

Stuff each breast with about one-quarter of the filling, distributing it evenly throughout the pocket and to the ends. Press on the top of each breast to close the pocket.

Line up three wide shallow dishes. Fill the first with the flour. In the second, whisk the eggs. In the third, toss the breadcrumbs with 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper.

Season the breasts generously on both sides with salt and pepper. Dredge one breast well in the flour, shaking off any excess. Dip it into the eggs, turning to coat evenly, and then dredge it in the breadcrumbs, pressing to make the crumbs adhere evenly. Gently shake off any excess. Set on a plate and repeat with the other breasts. Refrigerate for at least 5 minutes and up to 3 hours to let the breading set. Discard any leftover flour, egg, or crumbs.

Heat the oven to 350°F. Heat the oil in a heavy 10-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil is very hot, carefully add two of the breasts to the pan and cook until golden brown, about 3 minutes per side. If the oil seems to get too hot, reduce the heat to medium. Transfer the breasts to a baking sheet. Repeat with the other two breasts.

Bake until the chicken and filling reach 165°F on an instant-read thermometer, about 15 minutes. Serve immediately.

Make Ahead Tips

The filling can be made a day ahead and refrigerated, covered.

Serving Suggestions

Serve with pasta tossed with olive oil, garlic, and Parmigiano.

nutrition information (per serving):
Size : based on four servings; Calories (kcal): 740; Fat (g): 40; Fat Calories (kcal): 360; Saturated Fat (g): 13; Protein (g): 63; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 21; Carbohydrates (g): 28; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 6; Sodium (mg): 1140; Cholesterol (mg): 280; Fiber (g): 2;

Photo: Scott Phillips

Fantastic!! The flavours were fabulous and the chicken very moist and tender. I served it with a simple salad of greens and a dressing of olive oil and sherry vinegar and it was perfect. Will be on our frequent menu.

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