Sunday, 5 February 2012

Vintage Recipe Swap: Baked Polenta Stuffed Chicken with Sage

Well I am probably cheating a wee bit here, as this is not a new recipe but one I have posted on my blog before.  I hope that none of my fellow recipe swappers are too cross at me for what may look like laziness on my part.  My excuse for this is that I have just gone back to work after seven months off on Maternity Leave.  I hope you agree though that it does fit very well with the recipe Christianna has chosen for this months’ recipe swap – Wild Rice Dressing.

It has been a strange week of mixed emotions but I have enjoyed being back at work, this despite missing my wee ones.  There are some exciting things going on at work and I guess not everyone gets to arrange the launch of their company’s Nigeria office, task their colleagues in Libya, organise training for personnel working in hostile environments and sessions on the challenges facing those looking to work in such desirable locations as Iraq, Colombia, Libya, East Africa, West Africa, Piracy and the Caspian Basin and still go home to be mummy to three gorgeous bairns by night.  I do consider myself a very lucky lady!

I am only working four days a week at the moment, so will have an extended weekend with the children.  We are therefore hoping that the cold but beautiful weather we had in Aberdeen today will continue tomorrow so we can get outside to play - despite our northerly location, we have not yet come to a weather induced standstill as they have in England this weekend. Anyway, Mondays in this house are for making muffins (for inclusion in lunch boxes for the rest of the week) and tomorrow we’ll be making use of the pears languishing in the fruit bowl (yes the girls declared a like for pears and again I bought them in vast quantity convinced their fruit intake would increase – it hasn’t).  I’ll keep you posted as to our success or otherwise in the pear and choc chip muffin venture.

Back to this post though and as always, I am part of a gang of, I believe nearly 30, food-crazed bloggers who are part of the Burwell General Store Vintage Recipe Swap.  This is our third monthly foray into the delights ofThe Second Ford Treasury of Favourite Recipes From Famous Eating Places”.  Please visit the links below to see all the other contributors to the swap and their delicious recipes.

Here is my contribution – I hope you like it..


4 Chicken Breasts

8 slices prosciutto crudo

Fresh sage – 12 leaves

20g butter

For the stuffing:

50g polenta

20g bread crumbs (they don’t have to be fresh but homemade are best)

½ stick of celery

½ onion

1 small clove of garlic

Fresh sage – about one heaped dessert spoon finely chopped

Fresh thyme – about one teaspoon finely chopped

40g butter

½ of one beaten egg


Finely chop the sage, thyme, onion, garlic and celery.

Put the polenta in a saucepan (one larger than you would think necessary as the polenta grows quite a bit when you add the water) and add 375ml of water. Heat it on a low heat and simmer and stir for approximately 10 minutes until the polenta is thick and smooth.

Add 20g of the butter and stir well, then add the sage, thyme, onion, garlic and celery and mix well.

Remove from the heat and add the breadcrumbs mix again and then add the beaten egg, stirring well and seasoning with salt and pepper.

Allow the polenta mix to cool and set aside until it can be handled.

Prepare the chicken by slicing each breast open along the middle of one side so you can simply turn it like a page to open it up to add the stuffing.

Take about a dessert spoon of the polenta mix and make into a loose sausage-type shape, open the chicken breasts place the stuffing inside and close over so that none of the stuffing is showing. (There will probably be a little bit more stuffing than is required).

Place three of the sage leaves on the top of each breast and wrap each of the breasts with two slices of the prosciutto crudo.

Mash half the remaining butter (about 20g) onto the bottom of an oven proof dish (I use a lasagne dish for this) and place the chicken breasts close together on top of the butter. Divide the last 20g butter roughly in four and put a piece on top of each chicken breast. Season well and drizzle with a little olive oil.

Cover with tin foil and put in the oven for around 35 minutes – uncover for around the last ten minutes – basting the chicken well after taking off the foil. (I use quite large chicken breasts so the cooking time will be less if you use smaller pieces of chicken)

(Serves 4)
I usually serve this with new potatos and a nice green salad. Enjoy!

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