Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Reverse Smothered Chicken...Sort of


Okay.  So a lot of you, maybe even the majority, found me through my most popular recipe, Smothered Chicken.  By the way, I am so very appreciative of your support.  If it weren't for all of the Facebook shares, Pinterest repins, Twitter and Instagram likes, Google + shares, and Tumblr shares, I wouldn't be able to do this.  So a big thank you to all of you!

Anywho, I got to thinking about the Smothered Chicken the other day and how amazing the topping of creamed spinach, mushrooms and Mozzarella cheese is.  And I wondered if there was a way I could put a spin on that and add to it and make something even better.  Well, my friends, I think I did just that.  This is by far my favorite meal I've made in a long time.  These are Italian Chicken Rolls.  The creamed spinach and mushrooms are rolled up in chicken cutlets, wrapped in prosciutto ham, baked in beautiful rich marinara sauce, and topped with gooey melted fresh Mozzarella cheese.  It is so darn tasty!  I hope you love it as much as or even more than Smothered Chicken!

ITALIAN CHICKEN ROLLS
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
One 8-ounce bag fresh spinach
One 8-ounce package cream cheese, cut into cubes
One 8-ounce package mushrooms, chopped
3 T chopped red onion
1/4 C white wine
1/4 C shredded Parmesan cheese
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 T olive oil
2 T butter
Salt & pepper, to taste
8 slices prosciutto ham
3 C marinara sauce (click for my recipe)
One 8-ounce ball fresh Mozzarella, sliced into 8 slices

NOTE:  I get a lot of comments from people who have issues with getting their chicken done in the time I suggest.  Please use my cook times as a guideline, as not all ovens work the same or heat the same.  I would highly suggest you invest in a good meat thermometer so that you don't over or under cook your chicken.  This is the most accurate way to tell if your chicken is done.  You can get a good one for around $20 that has a long heatproof wire and a digital readout that sits on the counter so that you can keep the thermometer in the chicken the entire time it cooks.  Chicken needs to be 165 degrees internally to serve.  Also, this prevents the need to cut your chicken open to look at the inside, which causes you to lose juices.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Butterfly the four chicken breasts so that you now have 8 cutlets.  Place the cutlets between plastic wrap and pound them out thin.  

Melt the butter in a large skillet and drizzle in the olive oil. Cook the mushrooms and onion until tender.  Deglaze the pan with the wine and cook until most of the liquid has cooked out.  Add in the spinach and cook and stir until it has wilted.  Add in the cream cheese, garlic, and Parmesan. Cook and stir until the cream cheese is fully melted.  Taste it and see if you need to add salt and pepper.  

Pour the marinara sauce into a 9 x 13 casserole pan.  Put dollops of the spinach and mushroom mixture onto the center of each piece of chicken.  Roll them up.  Wrap each chicken breast with a piece of prosciutto.  Put the chicken seam-side down into the marinara sauce.  Cook for 40 to 45 minutes or until a meat thermometer in the center of the chicken registers at 165 degrees.  During the last few minutes of cooking, place a slice of Mozzarella over each piece of chicken and put it back into the oven to melt. 

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