Baked Stuffed Chicken Breasts with Arugula and Fontina
- 2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for greasing
- 5 oz. fontina cheese, preferably fontina Val d'Aosta
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, each about 7 oz.
- 1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper
- 1 large garlic clove, minced
- 16 arugula leaves, tough stems removed
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- 1 tsp. dried rosemary, crumbled
- 1 lemon, cut into 8 wedges
Trim off and discard the rind from the cheese. Cut the cheese into four 2-by-1 1/2-inch rectangles about 1/8 inch thick.
Using a flat meat pounder, pound each chicken breast half until flattened to an even thickness of about 1/4 inch. Season the chicken breasts with the salt and pepper.
Place 1 chicken breast, with the long side facing you, on the work surface. Top with one-fourth of the garlic and 4 arugula leaves, torn as needed to fit the breast half, leaving a 1-inch border uncovered on all sides. Top with a piece of cheese. Starting at a short end, roll up the breast, tucking in the arugula as needed; set seam side down. Repeat with the remaining chicken, garlic, arugula and cheese.
In a bowl, whisk together the eggs and 1 Tbs. of the olive oil. In a shallow dish, stir together the bread crumbs, oregano and rosemary. One at a time, coat a rolled chicken breast with the egg mixture and then roll in the bread crumbs, coating evenly. Place the breaded breasts, seam side down, on the parchment-lined baking sheet. Place the oiled baking dish in the oven and heat until very hot, about 3 minutes. Carefully arrange the breaded breasts, seam side down, in the hot dish. Drizzle evenly with the remaining 1 Tbs. oil. Bake until the bread crumbs are golden brown and an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center of a stuffed breast registers 170°F, 25 to 35 minutes.
Transfer the chicken to a carving board. Cut each stuffed breast crosswise into slices about 1/2 inch thick and transfer to warmed individual plates. Serve immediately, and pass the lemon wedges at the table. Serves 4.
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma New Flavors for Chicken, by Rick Rodgers (Oxmoor House, 2008).