Cheese & Herb Stuffed Chicken Thighs

Herb Stuffed Chicken Thighs VIItalian: Nessuno conosce che cosa sta cucinando nella vaschetta meglio di chi fa la mescolatura.  
      English: No one knows what is cooking in the pan better than the one doing the stirring

As I was looking through the poultry category in my “Evernote” files a particular Italian Sunday, Dinners recipe caught my eye, a saved recipe from Mario Batali ~ Food &Wine, affordable chef recipes.  I can see that this recipe can be made with all sort of filling variations, but for last night it was the perfect as is or in my case as close to following a recipe that I get with just a few changes.

For starters, I did not make the entire recipe, but I would not hesitate serving this as a company dish with a wonderful side of roasted vegetables.  I did make about ½ the recipe of stuffing with the specific idea in mind of tossing in a little cornbread stuffing crumbs, toasted chopped pine nuts, a drizzle of EVOO, and vegetable broth to what was left after stuffing the chicken, bonus baked “dressing” as a side dish.  Follow the directions on the stuffing package for exactly how much liquid to add to your entire amount of dressing.  Also consider your favorite add ins for the dressing, celery onion, dried fruit

If you are lucky, enough to find boneless, skin on chicken thighs you will be steps ahead from the get go since you won’t have to bone the chicken otherwise check out a video online and remember to leave the skin on for this particular recipe.

http://videos.tasteofhome.com/video/How-to-Debone-a-Chicken-Thigh
http://www.home-ec101.com/boning-chicken-thighs/

Herb-and-Cheese-Filled Chicken Thighs

Stuffed Chicken Thighs 2

Stuffed Chicken Thighs Ingredients

Adapted from Mario Batali

  • ACTIVE: 30 MIN
  • TOTAL TIME: 1 HR 15 MIN
  • SERVINGS: 8
  1. 1 1/2 cups fresh bread crumbs
  2. 1 1/2 cups freshly grated Parmesan or mixed Italian cheeses (Parmesan , Romano, Asiago is the mix that I added to the recipe
  3. 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  4. 1/2 cup grated Provolone cheese (1 1/2 ounces)
  5. 1/2 cup coarsely chopped basil
  6. 2 sprigs tender thyme, leaves only, minced
  7. 2 cloves finely minced garlic or ¼ – ½ teaspoons granulated garlic
  8. 1/4 cup coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley
  9. Finely grated zest of 2 lemons
  10. 1 tablespoon finely chopped rosemary
  11. 16 boneless chicken thighs with skin (about 5 ounces each)
  12. Salt and freshly ground pepper and an *optional pinch or two of Phillips Seafood Seasoning
  13. Kitchen twine, enough to tie each thigh 2 times
  1. Preheat the oven to 450°. In a medium bowl, combine the fresh breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, eggs, garlic, Provolone, chopped basil, thyme, chopped parsley, lemon zest and rosemary.
  2. Set the chicken thighs, skin side down, on a work surface and season with salt and freshly ground pepper. Mound 1/4 cup of the herb-and-cheese filling on each thigh.
  3. Fold the sides of the thighs over the filling to enclose it and tie each chicken thigh in 2 or 3 places with kitchen string.
  4. Brush the chicken thighs with EVOO and season with salt and pepper princes of ground red pepper flakes, rosemary.
  5. 2.  Arrange the stuffed chicken thighs on a large, rimmed baking sheet lined with foil and roast for about 35 minutes, or until golden brown. Let the chicken rest for 10 minutes, then discard the strings and serve.

Notes:  Make the stuffed chicken thighs ahead, refrigerate overnight. Let them return to room temperature before proceeding with the recipe.

I forgot to take the thighs out early in the morning, but thanks to a partial defrost in the microwave and then into a zip bag immersed in a deep bowl of cold water (refreshed water every 10 minutes or so) the thighs thawed out while I prepared the rest of the ingredients for the recipe.