Sunday, March 30, 2008

Spicy Farfel Stuffed Boneless Chicken

Farfel Stuffed Boneless Chicken
Adapted from Gourmet Magazine, April 2008

Hands on time: 15 minutes
Baking time: 40 minutes

Serves 6

4-6 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
4 cups matzo farfel
½ cup shelled pistachios, coarsely chopped
½ cup golden raisins
¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped
Salt & pepper to taste
2 large eggs, slightly beaten
1 ¾ cups chicken broth

Spice Mixture:
2 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp hot paprika or ½ tsp cayenne
¾ tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp ground allspice
¼ tsp ground cloves

Chicken & sauce:
Boneless & skinless chicken pieces (1 breast or 2 thighs/person)
½ cup dry white wine
1 tsp potato starch


Preheat the oven to 350° F/170° C

To Prepare the stuffing:

1. In a large skillet over medium high heat, sauté onion & red peppers until soft and golden, stirring often (about 10 minutes). Add the garlic and continue to cook just until you smell the wonderful garlic aroma (about 2 minutes).

2. While the onions are cooking, rinse the farfel in a colander under warm running water until softened (about 1 minute, tossing several times). Drain, pressing firmly to remove excess water.

3. Remove the onion mixture from the heat and stir in the farfel, pistachios, raisins, parsley, salt & pepper.

4. In a small bowl, whisk together eggs and ¾ cup chicken broth. Stir into the farfel mixture.

To prepare the chicken:

1. In a small bowl, mix the coriander, paprika/cayenne, cinnamon, allspice & cloves. Set aside.

2. Flatten chicken so that it’s even…two ways to do this…
a) Lay chicken piece, shiny side down, and cover lightly with plastic wrap. With a heavy object (I use a wooden meat tenderizer – flat side, but rolling pin works too) flatten the thicker part until it’s the same as the thin side.
b) Butterfly the thick part, starting at the middle (close to where the piece is thin) and gently slice horizontally, lifting the top toward the outer edge. This will give you a larger surface of chicken to stuff.

3. Scoop a spoonful of stuffing into the center and roll the sides up. I like to use toothpicks to hold the roll closed, but this means removing the toothpicks before serving … or warning everyone. For large parties, I just gently lay the filled rolls seam side down in the oven-proof dish.

4. Use an oven-proof dish, large enough to hold all the chicken pieces in one layer. Lay the chicken seam side down, sprinkle with spice mixture. Pour mixture of wine and chicken broth over the chicken. It should not cover the chicken completely. You want the chicken to brown, not “poach”.

5. Bake, uncovered for 30 - 40 minutes (it will take longer to cook the white meat because, the pieces are larger). Truthfully, the only way I know to actually check for “doneness” is to cut through one of the stuffed bundles – try one in the center of the pan – outer ones cook quicker.

Cooking extra stuffing:
Place the extra stuffing in an oven proof pan (loaf dishes work well if you like yours soft, square pans work well for those who all want the crispy topping).

Bake for about 20 minutes. If the top gets too crispy, cover with foil.


kitchenetta said...

Ruth, this looks like a winner. How does it reheat?

Ruth Daniels said...

Thanks. As for reheating...I did a single portion in the microwave for a minute and that worked well. I did the larger amount in the oven with a little chicken broth added to the ovenproof dish at 350F and it was fine too. Just keep checking for timing...I don't remember.