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chicken prosciutto
Prosciutto Wrapped Chicken / Pimiento Sauce

risi i bisi
Risi e Bisi

 

Menu Plan for the week of March 22, 2013: Day 2 Recipes

Prosciutto Wrapped Chicken / Pimiento Sauce
Risi e Bisi

Cooking time:  40 minutes for menu     Cooking schedule: see below for instructions

       This is a simple risotto side dish and would be wonderful with fresh, early spring peas!

Prosciutto Wrapped Chicken Breasts on Pimiento Sauce              Time:   40 minutes
     These are easy to make: slice a pocket, fill and tie.  The Prosciutto wrapping infuses the chicken with flavor and helps keep it moist.  The Pimiento Sauce adds just a bit of spice to it.

2 chicken breasts, boneless, skinless
2oz (60gr) Gruyère or other hard cheese, thinly sliced
4 slices Prosciutto (about 3oz, 90gr)
1 tbs olive oil
kitchen string
Pimiento Sauce:
4oz (120gr) pimientos (pimentos) or roasted red peppers, drained
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp chili powder
1 tbs tomato paste  use the stuff in the tube
1 tbs Greek or plain yogurt
1/4 - 1/2 cup (2-4oz, 60-120ml) chicken stock

With a sharp knife make a long slit in the edge of the chicken breast - cutting horizontally and being careful not to cut through the other side.  Make the cut on the 'straight' edge of the breast.  You should have a pocket the shape of the breast with 1/2 inch of 'uncut' chicken around 3 sides. 
Tuck the sliced cheese inside. 
Lay 2 slices of Prosciutto side by side.  Close the chicken breast and lay it on the Prosciutto at a slight angle,  Roll and wrap, covering the chicken breast completely in the ham, as best you can. 
Wrap the entire parcel with kitchen string to hold it together - and keep as much cheese inside as possible. 
Heat oil in a medium nonstick skillet over medium heat.  Add chicken and brown well on all sides, about 10 minutes total.  Reduce heat to low, cover and let finish cooking, another 10 - 15 minutes.
To finish:  Remove chicken from heat.  Snip the string in a few places and remove.  Spoon some Pimiento Sauce onto the plates, place the chicken in the center and serve, any remaining sauce on the side.
Pimiento Sauce:
Put pimiento/pepper, garlic powder and chili powder into a blender.  Add just enough of the chicken stock to enable it to purée.  Pour into a small saucepan and stir in tomato paste.  Gently heat until it starts to simmer.  Remove from heat, stir in yogurt and cover to keep warm. 

Risi e Bisi                                                          Preparation and cooking time:  25 minutes
    This classic Italian dish is normally served as a first course (as are all pasta and rice dishes in Italy).  We think it makes a great, creamy side dish.  The original is more like a thick soup, but I made this a bit thicker.  Still, like all risottos, it should be creamier than the American adaptations.  

1 cup frozen peas  use fresh if available
1/3 cup Arborio rice (or other rice specifically for risotto - Carnaroli or Vialone Nano)
1/3 cup dry, white wine
1 - 1 1/4 cups chicken stock
1 shallot
1 tbs butter
1/3 cup (1.5oz, 45gr) Parmesan cheese - freshly grated

Heat chicken stock and keep hot over low heat.  Finely chop shallot.  In medium sauce pan heat butter; add shallot and sauté until transparent, then add rice and sauté, stirring, for 2 - 3 minutes until rice has white center.  Add white wine and stir.  When wine is almost absorbed add a 1/4 cup of stock and stir.  If the peas are frozen add to the stock (not the rice) now.  When the rice has almost absorbed the stock add another 1/4 cup stock and the peas if they are fresh.  Continue adding stock, 1/4 cup at a time, and stirring.  Before the last 1/4 cup is added taste a few kernels of rice.  They should be just 'al dente' - slightly resistant to the tooth but fully cooked.  You may not need the last 1/4 cup.  If more stock is needed add it 1/8 cup at a time and waiting until almost completely absorbed.  At this point risotto will be thick but not stiff - it will not hold it's shape on a plate.  If using frozen peas, strain them from any remaining stock and add now. Stir in the Parmesan.   Pour into a bowl and serve immediately.  

Cooking Schedule: 45 minutes for menu
Assemble all food, utensils and serving dishes
Utensils: measuring cups, spoons, knives,
small skillet, medium skillet with lid, small saucepan,
2 medium saucepans, kitchen string, blender

Shell peas if using fresh or remove from freezer
Heat stock for rice
Slice chicken breasts
Slice cheese
Stuff chicken with cheese
Roll in Prosciutto, tie with kitchen string, sauté
Chop shallot for rice, sauté
Grate Parmesan
Add rice to shallots, sauté
Turn chicken

Add wine to rice, stir well
Add stock to rice, stir
Reduce heat under chicken, cover, cook
Purée pimientos, spices
Put pimientos in saucepan, gently warm
Add stock to rice, stir
Add frozen peas to stock or add fresh peas to rice
Stir rice
Add stock to rice, stir
Remove pimiento sauce from heat, stir in yogurt
Continue with risotto until done, strain peas, add
Stir cheese into risotto
Remove chicken, remove string
Spoon Pimiento sauce on 2 plates, top with chicken
Spoon risotto into a pretty bowl, serve