Looking for a delicious alternative to Ham for Easter Dinner?? This is what is on the menu at our house. A couple of years ago I saw Rachel Ray making Golden Bloom Chicken – which was the inspiration for this adaptation. My family loves these little bundles – Yes, they are a little time consuming, but worth the effort for a special dinner.
Chicken Bundles with Rosemary Cream Sauce
4 chicken cutlets or thin sliced chicken breasts *(can use 2 large boneless skinless chicken breasts prepared as below)
4-5 carrots (the real thing you have to peel)
1 large red bell peppers
1 bunch thin asparagus
1 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup chicken broth
1 clove garlic
¼ tsp dried rosemary, chopped
2-3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Fresh Ground Black Pepper
Cut carrots and red pepper into thin strips about the width of a ballpoint pen and about 3-4 inches long. Trim asparagus to the same length.
Steam or blanch the vegetables for 3 or 4 minutes (so they are still slightly crisp – the carrots will take a little longer than the peppers and asparagus). Immediately run cold water over them to halt cooking. Set aside.
*If you are using 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, you will need to slice each in half horizontally to make 4 cutlets. With a meat tenderizer, gently pound out each cutlet until it is thin and as even as possible. Cut each cutlet into 2 strips. Sprinkle each with salt and fresh ground pepper. Lay the vegetables across the chicken (5 or 6 carrots strips, 3 or 4 peppers and 1-2 asparagus) and roll up. Secure with a toothpick.
In a large nonstick skillet heat oil over medium heat, cook the bundles seam side down until brown, then turn until all sides are brown about 15-20 minutes. (Once the bundle seals you can remove the toothpicks) Remove chicken from pan.
In the hot pan, add the chicken broth and deglaze the pan (take a rubber spatula and remove all the bits and pieces stuck the bottom – lots of good flavor there). Add the garlic and then the cream. Add the rosemary (if using fresh just add a sprig and let it flavor the sauce as it cooks, then remove before serving). Let it boil for a minute or two while stirring, then turn it down and let it simmer for about 5 minutes.
Serve the chicken bundles on a bed of rice pilaf and spoon sauce over the top.
Makes 8 chicken bundles. I usually double this recipe – they are great reheated (if you have any left over!)