February is so close to being done, and we are getting closer to spring. Here in Edmonton, it’s supposed to get a bit colder and then warm up soon. I hope you’re staying warm wherever you live, and I hope you enjoy making and eating this recipe.
It started with an idea for chicken roulade a few months ago. I tried it with different ingredients and wasn’t happy with it. This time around, when I reworked the recipe, I found a variety that worked well. I might consider adding brie to the mix, but this recipe was satisfying. I served it with quenelles of garlic, horseradish mashed potatoes, and steamed carrots. I have not thought about doing quenelles since culinary school. I was reading a subreddit on food and saw someone do them with another dish, and I felt I needed to try it. Digression aside, I was delighted with how this dish turned out.
When I was looking at making this dish, I was thinking about a time when we rolled together turkey to make the light and dark logs that you sometimes see at Christmas time in the grocery store. We had put stuffing in it, and when you cut the roll into slices, you had turkey and stuffing in one. I looked up a few recipes to see what it might look like using chicken, which we know is a smaller bird. This chicken’s size makes this recipe slightly more complicated but tasty.
To make this work, you’ll require a rolling pin, a meat mallet, some plastic wrap or a zip-top bag, and a flat surface. I like to wear nitrile gloves, but that is a personal choice. Put your chicken breast in a bag or between two sheets of wrap and either roll it with the rolling pin until you get 1/8-inch thickness or pound it out to that same thickness. Be careful with pounding it out; you want to be firm enough to flatten the breast but not so firm that you tear it. I choose to use my mallet for this procedure. Once the meat is flattened, you’ll need more plastic wrap for rolling. You will lay the breasts down, overlap the thighs, season with salt and pepper on the inside, then Parmesan cheese, mozzarella, and provolone. Grab the thigh end of the plastic wrap and start rolling the chicken in on itself. Firmly press the ends to roll evenly, and once you reach the end, tightly wrap it with the plastic. Start rolling the plastic to tighten the meat up and tie the ends. Put the chicken in the fridge for an hour, then preheat your oven to 375F. Once you grab the chicken from the refrigerator, season the outside with salt and pepper, and you can wrap bacon around it as I did or cook it as is. Line a sheet pan and parchment or aluminum foil sprayed with pan spray. Cook the chicken to 165F internal temperature for about 30 minutes, and let it rest for five more. Slice it up and enjoy!
Three Cheese Chicken Roulade
6 chicken breasts
9 chicken thighs
6 slices of provolone cheese
9 slices of mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup shredded Parmesan
9 slices of bacon
- Lay out 2 feet of plastic wrap on a cutting board.
- Lay down a single chicken breast and cover it with another sheet of plastic,
- Roll it out to 1/8-inch thickness.
- Repeat with all the breasts and thighs.
- Remove the sheets and get a clean piece of plastic wrap about 2 feet long as well.
- Layer your breasts two wide and three thighs below.
- Season liberally with salt and pepper.
- Add 1/8 of a cup of grated parmesan, 3 slices of mozzarella, and 2 slices provolone cheese.
- Grab the top of the plastic wrap and start rolling towards yourself, while trying to keep the chicken rolling tightly on itself.
- Continue rolling the log until it is very tightly packed and tie off the ends.
- Chill in the fridge for up to one hour
- Before removing the chicken from the fridge, heat your oven to 375F
- Grab a baking tray and line it with parchment or aluminum foil, cover the foil with pan spray
- Remove the chicken logs and unwrap them.
- Season the outside of the chicken liberally with more salt and pepper.
- Wrap them with bacon, if using.
- Transfer carefully to the cooking sheet and bake until they reach an internal temperature of 165F, it should take about 30 – 35 minutes.
- If you add bacon, you will also need to broil the bacon to get it to crisp up. You will need to watch it very carefully for up to three minutes. Once the bacon looks darker and is getting crispy, then pull out the chicken. If you do not watch it carefully it will burn very quickly.
- Rest the chicken for 5 minutes before slicing.