Peperonata con Bruschetta,
e Patate al Forno
The main course, Chicken Galliano, is derivative of several recipe versions found online, and changed up by me. It gets it's special flavor for vanilla, anise and a couple of dozen other herbs and spices. Often seen as an aperitif or a mixer, it really brings a nice balance to the sauce for this dish. It really is a requirement, and the dish won't be the same without it. The bottle is very distinctive, and therefor easy to find. It looks like this:
3 large boneless skinless chicken breasts
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 oz. herbed goat cheese, softened
6 thin slices prosciutto
1 tbsp. finely chopped tarragon
1 tbsp. finely chopped dill
6 tbsp. unsalted butter, chilled, divided
1 lb. Cremini or button mushrooms, cleaned and sliced 1/4" thick
Flour, for dredging
4 tbsp. olive oil, divided
1 1⁄2 cups chicken broth
1⁄4 cup Galliano liqueur
extra-virgin olive oil
1 sweet red bell pepper, topped, cored, seeded and cut in large chop
1 sweet orange bell pepper, topped, cored, seeded and cut in large chop
1 sweet yellow bell pepper, topped, cored, seeded and cut in large chop
2 oz. port wine
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
salt & pepper
Bread for bruschetta (optional)
10 red potatoes, quartered , or russet potatoes cut in 1" chunks
Black pepper, freshly cracked
3 tbsp Parmesan cheese, grated
Heat the over to 375°. Toss the cut up potates in olive oil, salt and pepper and spread out on an oven-proof dish or pan. place them in the oven to roast, turning occasionally, for about an hour.
Take each chicken breast, and slice it in half for thickness, as shown below. You want to end up with pieces about the same size as the original, only half as thick. It isn't easy to see, but in the picture below I am halfway through cutting one of the breasts in half thickness-wise, with the top part folded back:
Next you will then be pounding each half-thick breast portion out to 1⁄8" thick. The best way to do this is to use a large piece of plastic wrap, and a little water, placing the chicken in between. By gently pounding this assembly, you can thin the chicken evenly without tearing or shredding it. Here's what one piece looked like before pounding:
...and here's what it looked like after pounding. See how much larger it is? much easier to roll and will cook more evenly, too.
The better the goat cheese you can buy, the tastier your dish will be. The tangy tartness of the the cheese will be both moderated by the cooking process and the inclusion of the Galliano liqueur, so don't be put off by how it tastes alone. You are also going to make this easier if you take the time to cut a dozen pieces of kitchen twine about 10"-12" long. It is better to have them ready in advance instead of trying to cut them while you are busy rolling chicken. The prosciutto must be of the very thin variety - see how well you can easily make out the pattern on the plate below through 2 or 3 layers of it:
These flattened breasts will be filled with the goat cheese and prosciutto, topped with a bit of the dill and tarragon, and then rolled and tied.
Tie each breast once near each end. This will help to keep them from unrolling and need not be excessively tight. Place the tied breasts on a plate and salt and pepper them on all sides.
In a large 12" skillet, place a couple of tablespoons of butter and one of olive oil and allow to coat over medium heat. While this is heating, dredge the chicken rolls in flour, coating all sides and the ends. Tap them lightly to remove any excess flour, but make sure the entire thig is coated.
Brown these chicken breasts for 3-4 minutes on each of four sides, for a total of 12-16 minutes, and they will be fully cooked. Remove the cooked breasts from the pan to a plate and let cool. Wipe out the pan, and add the rest of the butter and 2 tablespoons olive oil, stirring until melted. Add in the mushrooms, stirring until coated, and then stirring occasionally until they are sauteed:
Once the mushrooms are done, remove them to a separate plate and then add the chicken broth and Galliano to the pan, de-glazing it as you go. Keep on the heat until the liquid is reduced by half.
In a second large saute pan, add 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil and the peppers, tossing liberally to make sure they are coated. Saute these over meduum heat, tossing frequently, until they start to soften and tint at the edges:
Add in the wine and the vinegar, and mix well to get everything coated. Salt and pepper to taste. Keep cooking over medium heat until liquid is gone, then remove from heat.
Once the potatoes are done, remove from oven and sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese. Mix together well to coat all the potatoes.
Once the chicken sauce has reduced by half, add the stuffed chicken back to the pan and roll to coat liberally. Add the mushrooms back in and heat all together.
Plate the chicken, and add any remaining butter to the pan to thicken the gravy, stirring until incorporated. Now start spooning mushrooms and gravy over the stuffed rolls. Plate up the potatoes, adding salt and pepper if needed and maybe a little chives if desired. Finally serve up the roasted peppers, over bruschetta if desired:
You had better be hungry, because this is a good-sized meal, but is so tasty it's hard to stop! Left overs make excellent lunches...
In case you are wondering, the title of this post translates to "Italian Feast for my Beautiful Wife".