I am off enjoying some time away with my hubby and our great friends, but I didn't forget about you. Today I'm going to share these tasty little chicken bundles. I have spent a lot of money in my lifetime on "gourmet" Artichoke Pesto at the store, little did I know how easy it is to make at home. I love the pesto alone with a good loaf of Italian bread or mixed into some cooked warm pasta.
Artichoke Lemon Pesto Stuffed Chicken Breasts
For the Pesto:
2 (6 ounce) jars Marinated Artichoke Hearts, drained
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan Cheese
1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted
2 small cloves garlic, peeled
Juice of 1 lemon (about 2-3 tablespoons)
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon Olive Oil
1/4 cup fresh Italian Parsley, packed
For the Chicken Breasts:
6 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 cup (4 ounces) Five Blend Italian Shredded Cheese
3/4 cup butter, melted
2 cups Panko Breadcrumbs
In the bowl of a food processor, combine the drained artichoke hearts, Parmesan cheese, pine nuts, garlic, lemon juice, lemon zest, salt and olive oil. Pulse until rough chopped. Add the Parsley and pulse until combined. Set aside.
Place a chicken breast between 2 sheets of plastic wrap and pound until about 1/2 inch thick. Repeat with remaining breasts. Salt and Pepper the chicken breasts. Combine the Artichoke Lemon Pesto with the cup of Five Blend Italian Cheese. Place about 1/3 cup in the middle of each breast and beginning at the point end, roll up, tucking the sides in and place seam side down on a baking sheet. You can secure them with a toothpick if desired. Place in the fridge for about 1 hour.
Melt butter in a dish and place the panko breadcrumbs in another dish. Dip the bundled chicken breasts in the melted butter and then roll in the panko. Place the prepared chicken bundles in a 9 x 13 inch dish and pour any remaining melted butter over the tops. I also give it a spray with my olive oil sprayer or you could use cooking spray so the breadcrumbs will brown nicely.
Cook in a 350 degree over for about 35 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Turn the broiler on for a couple of minutes if the breadcrumbs need to brown a little more. Let them rest about 5 minutes before serving. If the chicken breasts are big, I will often slice them into rounds with a serrated knife and place on a serving tray.
Cooks Note: You'll probably have some pesto left, mix in a couple more tablespoons of olive oil and mix it with hot cooked pasta or use it to spread on crusty Italian bread. It is delicious!
If you don't want to pound the chicken you can also cut a slit in the breast horizontally and stuff the pesto into the slit and secure with a toothpick.
Linked to the following parties:
Our very own Weekend Potluck
Walking on Sunshine Foodie Friends Friday
Six Sisters' Stuff Strut Your Stuff Saturday Link Party
Lemon Sugar Share It Saturday
Everyday Mom's Meals Church Supper
Addicted to Recipes Scrumptious Sunday Link Party
Gooseberry Patch Just for Mom
Buns In My Oven What's Cookin' Wednesday
Katherine Martinelli Mother's Day Link Party