Thursday, June 5, 2014

Chicken Cordon Bleu

It's a weeknight....who knows what's for dinner? (or do you say 'supper?') Something full of flavor and fun to make would be nice, right? (Well duh!) Here's where chicken cordon bleu, with its many variations and endless possibilities, comes to the rescue!

This is a very simple recipe, leaving you plenty of room to be creative and add your own flair! Plus, once it's prepared, it just bakes in the oven while you go about the rest of your weeknight business! (Unless you're me, who didn't want to leave the kitchen and practically sat in front of the oven, waiting for it to be done.) 

Part 1: Now, onto making it! I broke the recipe into two parts, to keep it simple. In this first part, I prepared the ingredients, and made up the cordon bleu rolls. It started with pounding the chicken (to death!). As a tip, covering the chicken with plastic wrap before pounding it, will keep the meat from tearing (and it's a bit more sanitary). Start in the center and work your way out for the best results. Once flattened, top with cheese and ham, and roll it up! Also, you can use any type of ham, such as deli slices, leftovers, etc. This ham, below, is leftover from a ham bone we did on the grill earlier in the week. Once all the rolls are made, you're ready for part 2!

Part 2: Not too difficult, right? Next, we make the topping! Seasoned breadcrumbs would do the trick, but where's the fun in that? Be creative here and add whatever seasonings (fresh or dried) you have on hand! Then, after brushing each roll with the egg wash, pat the crumb topping all over the chicken, and top with a tasty garnish (like fresh rosemary leaves).

Bake at 350 degrees for about an hour, or until the inside of the chicken has reached 165 degrees (mine took a little over an hour). Remember, chicken is not one of those meats where "medium" or "medium-rare" will do. It must be cooked all the way! Another way to ensure chicken is fully cooked is by cutting into the thickest part with a sharp knife. If the juices run clear and there is no pink, it's all set!

These made pretty large cordon bleu rolls - 2 were perfect for my family of 3! Also, if you happen to have leftovers...mine made an excellent chicken (cordon bleu) salad when mixed with cranberries, celery, almonds, red onion, a little mayo, and a homemade Greek yogurt dressing. What would you do with your leftovers? What type of bread crumb mixture would you make? Feel free to 'posh' up this recipe as much as your heart desires! It's a great base recipe, with room for creative flair - just go for it!
With love (for food),
--A dash of posh can make all the difference in your next dish!--