Monday, April 30, 2012
Chicken Cordon Bleu with a Creamy Wine Sauce
Chicken tender enough to slice with a fork, salty Black Forest ham and the mild melting flavors of Havarti cheese makes this a perfect dinner for family night or for a fancier company meal. This is one of my favorite ways to prepare chicken. I've made numerous versions of Cordon Bleu in the past, including Green Chile Chicken Cordon Bleu and the Chicken Cordon Bleu Eggrolls I made last month.
This is classic Chicken Cordon Bleu and it is always a success. I wanted to make a new sauce to go with the chicken and I found this simple white wine sauce on allrecipes.com. I adapted it slightly and we really liked the combination of the chicken, ham and cheese along with the lightly flavored wine sauce. Served both with and without the sauce, this chicken dish has been enjoyed by every person to whom I've ever served it.
Chicken Cordon Bleu
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, sliced thin to create 8 fillets (directions are below)
4 ounces black forest ham, about 4 large slices cut in half (they should be about the same size as the flattened chicken breasts)
4 ounces Havarti or Swiss cheese, about 4 large slices cut in half (they should be about the same size as the flattened chicken breasts)
1/4 cup AP flour, I used a combination of brown rice flour and tapioca starch this time and that worked great as well
1 teaspoon paprika
kosher salt, to taste
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
4-6 tablespoons butter
3/4 cup white wine
1 1/4 teaspoon chicken base, I used Better Than Bouillon
1 1/4 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon arrowroot or cornstarch
dash of paprika
Prep the four chicken breasts by rinsing them, trimming any fat and then slicing lengthwise to create 8 uniform chicken fillets. Place two breasts in a gallon size ziploc bag and use a meat mallet to pound them to a uniform thickness of approximately 1/4".
Place a slice of ham on the chicken and then a slice of cheese over the ham. Roll the chicken to create bundles and then secure with toothpicks or kitchen twine. Mix the flour, paprika, salt and pepper in a small bowl and then use the flour mixture to coat the chicken bundles on all sides.
Preheat the oven to 350. While the oven is heating, heat half the butter in a large skillet over medium high heat. Cook four chicken bundles at a time, turning as needed, until the chicken is browned on all sides. Remove browned chicken to an oven-proof baking dish and set aside. Add the remaining butter to the skillet. Cook the rest of the chicken and then transfer it to the baking dish. Bake until the chicken is cooked through and no longer pink. Be careful not to overcook it. This took about 10 minutes for me. When the chicken is finished in the oven, tent with foil and set aside until ready to eat.
In a small saucepan, over medium heat, warm the wine and the chicken base. Whisk to combine. In a small cup, whisk the arrowroot into the cream until smooth. Drizzle the cream into the saucepan very slowly, whisking until combined. Continue cooking over medium heat, stirring the mixture until it thickens. Pour the cream sauce over the chicken when ready to serve. Enjoy!