Wednesday, October 27, 2010

stuffed chicken breast with mushroom pan sauce

Sorry the picture is blurry...I thought I had a better one.

This is my second attempt at the mushroom pan sauce and this time I got something really tasty!

Stuffed Chicken Breast with Mushroom Pan Sauce

4 boneless chicken breast halves
1/4 cup bread crumbs
3 Tbsp Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
2 tsp dried thyme, divided
1 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 cup low-sodium beef stock
1 cup sliced mushrooms
4 cloves of garlic, minced fine
1 Tbsp butter (optional)
canola oil for cooking

For this, I used my large cast-iron pan because it works very well for pan-frying and braising. You could use a large heavyweight standard or nonstick pan just as well. If using a cast-iron pan, make sure you preheat it on medium heat with a tablespoon of oil in it for about 8-10 minutes before you're ready to cook.

- In a small bowl, combine bread crumbs, Parmesan, mozzarella, 1 tsp of dried thyme, and black pepper.

- Make a horizontal slit in each piece of chicken, being careful not to cut all the way through.

- Stuff cheese mixture into the pocket of each chicken breast and press closed.

- Place chicken pieces into a preheated and oiled pan. Allow to sear for 3-4 minutes on each side, or until nicely browned.

- Once both sides of the chicken pieces are browned, pull the chicken out and set it aside momentarily.

- Deglaze pan with white wine, being sure to scrape up brown bits off the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon.

- Add beef broth, mushrooms, garlic, and remaining thyme. Add chicken back to pan, making sure to dump in any juices that have accumulated.

- Cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Cook for 15-20 minutes, or until a thermometer inserted into thickest part of chicken breast registers about 150 degrees. Carry-over heat will ensure the chicken cooks through the rest of the way.

- When chicken is done, remove from pan. If desired, add butter and allow to melt, stirring to thicken sauce a little. If you want to skip the butter, just spoon the sauce over the chicken when you serve it.