Chicken Stuffed with Fontina Cheese and Ham

Makes 6 servings.

Ingredients:

Bourbon Peach-Peanut Relish:

  • 1 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1 (16-oz. package) frozen peaches, diced and dried (about 3 c.)
  • 1/2 c. bourbon
  • 1/2 c. brown sugar
  • 1 serrano chile, seeded and minced
  • 1/4 c. diced roasted red pepper
  • 2 tsp. rice wine vinegar
  • 1/2 c. unsalted peanuts, toasted

Compound Butter:

  • 1/4 lb. (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 tbsp. chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp. Tabasco® sauce
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste

Chicken:

  • 6 slices Black Forest or Bavarian ham
  • 4 c. raw baby spinach, sautéed and blotted dry
  • 6 slices fontina cheese
  • 6 bone-in chicken breasts, with rib bones only removed (leave skin on)
  • Chopped rosemary or peanuts, for garnish (optional)

Instructions:

For the relish, heat a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the butter and cook until it foams. Add the peaches and sauté, about 30 seconds. Add the bourbon and continue to cook 2 to 3 minutes. Add the brown sugar and cook just until it dissolves and the bourbon evaporates, 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a medium bowl and cool. Add the remaining relish ingredients. Toss well and reserve.

For the compound butter, in the bowl of an electric mixer, combine all of the ingredients and mix well. Reserve at room temperature.

For the chicken, preheat oven to 400°F. Make 6 stacks, layering the ham slices, spinach, and cheese. Stuff each chicken piece, placing one stack between the skin and meat of each piece. Rub the tops of the chicken pieces with the compound butter, and place them on the baking sheet. Bake, skin side up, for 20 to 25 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 160ºF.

To serve, place 1 breast on each of six serving plates. Top each with a portion of the relish. Sprinkle the chopped rosemary or peanuts around the chicken, for garnish, if desired.

Photo & recipe courtesy of Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board, Inc.