STUFFED CHICKEN AND BACON PARCELS

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Ready for the oven – just add a drizzle of oil before cooking

This is another one of those ‘necessity-as mother-of-invention’ recipes, which all came together when I had chicken breasts, some streaky bacon, and a packet of fresh ready-made stuffing that all needed to be used on the same day. It just all worked so well; the family was enchanted; it was easy to make, and virtually hands free once it went into the oven. I actually tried it out on some old friends who came for dinner, and got the same enthusiastic response. All those people can’t be wrong, can they?

 

EQUIPMENT:

  • A roasting tin big enough to hold  your chicken breasts
  • a sharp filleting knife or similar

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 skinless chicken breast per person (This recipe can be expanded to virtually any number)
  • 1 packet of thin rashers of streaky bacon (unsmoked) You’ll need 3-4 for each chicken breast.
  • 250g or so of stuffing with parsley (either make your own, or use a good ready-made)
  •  Oil, to drizzle. I use either Olive or Rapeseed oil.

METHOD:

  • Drizzle a little oil over the roasting tray.
  • Using the sharp knife, make a thin slit along the side of each chicken breast, to make a pocket which will hold the stuffing

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  • Place 3 or 4 of the rashers side by side and put the chicken breast on top.
  • push the stuffing into the slit in the chicken, don’t worry if it spills a bit
  • Now pull each rasher of bacon over the top of the chicken to make a neat parcel. Repeat with all the chicken, stuffing and bacon.

 

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  • Place each parcel into the roasting tray as it’s finished
  • At this stage, you can cover the whole dish with cling film, and refrigerate for up to 12 hours. I think it helps them firm up nicely
  • When ready to cook, drizzle liberally with the oil
  • Roast in a medium hot oven (about 180 Fan) for 45 minutes or so, baste occasionally. Test the thickest part of the parcel with a skewer, the juices should run clear. The bacon should be browned and crispy.
  • Allow to relax for about 10 minutes in a warm place

To Serve:

NOTES: 

  • I think that the streaky rashers are the best for this recipe – Back bacon is just too ‘meaty’ somehow; the streaky bacon crisps up really nicely too.
  • For Dinner parties, I tend to keep the same basic recipe, but to ‘posh-up’ the ingredients, such as using Parma ham instead of bacon, and making my own stuffing, but people like the every-day version anyway.
  • I had a few cooked parcels left over recently, and discovered that they make a terrific lunch or picnic dish if allowed to go cold, refrigerated, and then sliced – really tasty.

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About

I started writing down recipes in an old copybook when I was about 16. With 6 children at home, my Mother was always glad of a hand in the kitchen, and really allowed us to experiment - as long as we washed up afterwards, and left the kitchen immaculate! Having a tidy kitchen has followed me through my life, as has the habit of writing down my favourite recipes; except that these days I write them for my website, and add photographs when I can. The website really started when it occurred to me that my daughter might like to have these recipes when I've forgotten them. In my early days of cooking for family and friends, I used to phone my Mum all the time to ask her for the recipe for some of our favourite family dinners. She rarely had a recipe to hand - I think, like me, she made a lot of it up as she went along.. So welcome to Eating for Ireland - these are the recipes that my friends and family having been eating these past 40 years.. yes, I truly am ancient! They are tried and tested, and have worked for me for all that time - I have updated them as new ingredients became available - I really hope you'll find something that you can make into a family favourite of your own. You don't have to tell anyone where you found these great new dishes that you're serving up - it can be our little secret, but I'd really love it if you could give me a sneaky 'follow' on Facebook and Instagram.. So off you go - have a good rummage around, you're bound to find something new! My sincere thanks to all of you who have found a recipe that you liked and dropped me a line to tell me - I really do love to hear from you! Happy Cooking! Becks xx

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