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Chicken Breasts stuffed with Apricots in a Savory Chèvre

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Serves: 2 | Total Time: 1 day, 1 hour and 40 minutes


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I have been making this stuffed chicken breast recipe for years. It is one of my favorite chicken recipes!

This is the perfect date night dinner recipe to make if you are looking for meal ideas for two. The majority of the work can be done a day in advance, leaving you more time for what you like to do best during a romantic dinner – spending your undivided time on your date!

I first came up with this chicken recipe idea many years ago. I had just moved to Long Island and was hankering for a fancy dinner at home that I could make for myself. I had some chopped dried apricots sitting in my cupboard that I had picked up on a whim. At the time, I had never cooked with apricots before, much less dried ones!

Having trouble finding dried apricots at your grocery store? Purchase some good quality ones by clicking on:

iGourmet.com
Baked Chicken Breast

Apricots are a stone fruit, and stone fruits pair well with white wine. In fact, you can get a wonderful peach wine on the north fork of Long Island. I just happened to have a bottle that I had gotten that week while out wine tasting with a good friend.

I did not use the peach wine in this recipe since I was going to use the chopped dried apricots. This is a savory main dish, after all! I decided to stick with a bright, fresh wine with acidity, such as Sauvignon Blanc, which typically has notes of peach without being too sweet.

Chicken Breast Meat With Chopped Dried Apricots

Sage and thyme are my favorite herbs to cook with chicken. So of course, they got added to the recipe. All I needed now was a nice, creamy base for the stuffing.

Enter plain goat cheese.

If you have never cooked with goat cheese and you are not sure what to expect, know that it breaks down into a wonderful custard-like consistency when heated up. It also absorbs any flavor you add to it. The more aged the goat cheese, the more earthy the flavor, but in any case, it’s light tanginess will balance out the sweetness of the apricots beautifully.

Oh boy, how do you stuff chicken breasts?

Entree Idea: How Do You Stuff Chicken Breasts?

For the best results, start with chicken breasts that are large. The fatter they are, the easier it will be to stuff them without piercing through the meat. If you do pierce it, just wrap the skinny end of the breast underneath that part and place it on the bottom of the sheet tray when it comes time to bake the chicken. The meat will cook together, searing in the flavors of the herbed goat cheese with fruit you whipped up.

A note about how to cut chicken breasts to stuff; use a paring knife. It is small, sharp, and easy to maneuver.

You might find it a little strange that I leave my chicken breasts uncovered when chilling overnight. Don’t worry, they will dry out a little, but you want some of this to happen because it is what will give these boneless, skinless chicken breasts a nice crust; one that will seal all the juices inside during baking. The butter acts as a moisture barrier, too, so use it liberally!

Plan for a little extra time for baking. The best baked stuffed chicken breasts will take longer to cook through the stuffing. It may take close to double the time you are used to if you normally cook chicken breasts all by themselves.

Baked Stuffed Chicken Breasts

You’ll know when the chicken breasts are done by piercing a hole through one with a sharp skewer. If the juices run out clear, they are ready. Try to resist cutting them open with a knife. If they are not yet done, all of the moisture may steam out through the cut as they finish baking.

The bigger the cut, the more moisture you’ll lose.

Lost moisture means… dry chicken meat.

No!

So, resist the urge… please!

Baked Stuffed Chicken Breast Chevre Goat Cheese

I like to let my baked stuffed chicken breasts rest on a cutting board for a few minutes before slicing. This allows the juices to reabsorb into the meat so that you don’t lose too much when you cut them for serving. This is a really important step for the juiciest white meat ever. I know, you just want to dig in, but trust me on this part. 

Wait that extra five minutes!

If you want to serve this as a fancy main course dish, place the slices fanned out on plates. Garnish with a leaf of butter lettuce and a dried apricot. If you are more the casual type, just place the whole chicken breasts on plates let everyone cut their own. Add a side of white rice or potatoes and your favorite veggies.

Oh, and don’t forget the glasses for that bottle of white wine you opened. Sauvignon Blanc pairs great with chèvre goat cheese, too!

Fine Dining Dishes with Chevre Goat Cheese

Sauvignon Blanc Pairs Will With Goat Cheese Dishes

Wine pairings for Chicken Breasts stuffed with Apricots in a Savory Chèvre:

Sauvignon Blanc is the best bet for this dish. Go for one made with riper grapes, like those found in Napa. A great one to try:

Joel Gott Sauvignon Blanc 2018

Learn How To Cook With Gordon Ramsay!
Chicken Recipe Ideas
Meal Ideas For Twto
Goat Cheese Stuffed Apricot Chicken

Chicken Breasts stuffed with Apricots in a Savory Chèvre

Christy Boston’s Kitchen
Looking for romantic dinner recipe ideas? Chopped dried apricots and herbed goat cheese fill these stuffed chicken breasts. Make this chicken dinner a day ahead and enjoy a no-fuss date night at home.
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 10 mins
Chilling and Resting Time 1 d 5 mins
Total Time 1 d 1 hr 35 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine French, Gourmet
Servings 2 people

Ingredients
  

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil divided
  • 1 shallot peeled and finely chopped
  • ¼ cup finely chopped dried apricots
  • 2 tablespoons white wine
  • 1 ½ teaspoons chopped fresh sage leaves
  • ½ teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • 4 ounces chèvre (goat cheese) room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon almonds finely chopped
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon salted butter softened and divided
  • 2 large boneless skinless chicken breasts

Instructions
 

  • Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a medium-sized skillet over medium heat. Sauté the shallot and chopped dried apricots until lightly browned and glossy, about 5 minutes, stirring frequently to prevent them from burning. Add the wine and continue to stir for another minute, or until the liquid is absorbed, then stir in the herbs. Cook for one more minute or until the herbs become fragrant but not browned. Remove the skillet from the heat.
  • Add the goat cheese to the skillet and stir to combine with the apricot mixture. Next, stir in the almonds. Season with salt and pepper. Continue to stir until well mixed. The mixture should begin to bind into a ball. This is what you want to see; it will be easier to work with when stuffing the chicken breasts. Transfer the goat cheese filling to a small bowl and set aside.
  • Butter a baking dish with 1/2 tablespoon butter, set aside.
  • Using a paring knife, cut pockets into the chicken breasts, starting at the thickest end where the tendon is located. Use your fingers to carefully push through the breast to make a pocket, being careful not to poke a hole in the side. Use a small spoon or your fingers to stuff one chicken breast with half of the goat cheese filling. Massage the meat gently to push the filling into the farthest corners of the pocket, then pinch the hole shut. Fold the thin end of the chicken breast under (covering any thin spots or holes that may have torn while stuffing the chicken breast) and place in the prepared baking dish with the folded side down. Repeat with the second chicken breast, using the rest of the filling, if possible. You do not want to overstuff the chicken, so don’t fret if you have some filling left over.
  • Rub the remaining 1/2 tablespoon butter onto the outside of the chicken breasts, being careful not to push out the stuffing. Place the baking dish with the stuffed chicken breasts in the refrigerator, uncovered, overnight or for up to 24 hours, but not longer than 1 day.
  • When ready to bake: Preheat the oven to 375F. Cover the stuffed chicken breasts tightly with foil and bake for 45 minutes, or until the internal temperature of the meat reaches 120F. After 45 minutes, remove the foil and baste the chicken breasts with the pan juices. Bake for another 10-15 minutes or until the chicken just begins to brown.
  • Increase the heat to 475F. Baste the chicken breasts with olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and sprinkle a small amount of chopped almonds over the meat. Put the chicken in the oven again and bake for another 10-15 minutes, or until juices run clear. The internal temperature of the meat should be 150F.
  • Remove the chicken from the oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board and carefully slice the breasts crosswise, being careful not to push out the stuffing. Serve drizzled with the juices from the pan. If you have any leftover stuffing, reheat it for a minute or two and serve it with your chicken dinner.

Video

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Cabbage Sarma Stuffed with Laotian Lamb Larb

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Serves: 2 | Total Time: 30 Minutes

I love ground lamb recipes because they are so versatile.

Lamb larb is so easy to make – perfect if you are looking for summer dinner ideas on the fly. In addition to the juicy lamb meat, crunchy peanuts, and the hint of spice from the chilis, you’ll be surprised to know that this dinner is keto as well.

Even though ground lamb is the main ingredient, this meal is light, tasty, and oh so messy! The best part is that you can have this fast, easy dinner on the table in 30 minutes, too. 

So, grab those napkins and head on out to the front porch. This great low carb substitute for traditional hamburgers just might become your new favorite easy weeknight meal.


Cabbage Sarma Stuffed with Laotian Lamb Larb

Total Time: 30 Minutes

Prep: 15 Minutes / Cook: 15 Minutes

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted peanuts
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus 1/2 tablespoon, divided
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
  • 1 lb. ground lamb
  • kosher salt
  • 1 large shallot, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 5 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 3 dried chili d-arbol, seeds removed and crushed
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons torn mint leaves
  • 1/2 cup roughly chopped fresh basil leaves
  • 2 drops lemongrass essential oil
  • 1 drop marjoram essential oil
  • green cabbage, quartered and leaves separated
  • Roughly chopped fresh cilantro leaves, for garnish

RECIPE DIRECTIONS:

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Arrange the peanuts in a single layer on a baking sheet and toast in the oven for 6 to 8 minutes, or until golden brown and fragrant. Allow to cool slightly then chop into small pieces.

2. While the peanuts are baking, prepare the other ingredients. 

3. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add the garlic and using a wooden spoon, smash them down into the hot oil until they break into smaller pieces. Keep this up for about 2 minutes, continuously mashing the garlic around in the oil until it becomes golden brown, but not burnt.

4. Add the ground lamb to the skillet with a pinch of salt. Stir the lamb into the garlic, mashing it down to really infuse the flavor into the meat. Continue doing this for about 3 minutes or until no clumps remain and meat is no longer pink. Remove the skillet from the heat immediately to prevent overcooking. Do not drain off the fat.

5. With the skillet still off the heat, add the shallots, scallions, chilis, lime juice, fish sauce, mint, basil, and half of the peanuts. Whisk the essential oils into the remaining half tablespoon of olive oil, then fold it into the lamb larb. Gently stir to combine all ingredients.

6. Transfer lamb larb to a bowl with a large spoon. Arrange cabbage leaves on a platter with the remaining peanuts and the cilantro in ramekins. To serve, spoon the lamb larb into a cabbage leaf and garnish with peanuts and cilantro. Roll the leaf around the meat, then eat it with your hands. 

Cabbage Sarma Stuffed With Laotian Lamb Larb
Cabbage Sarma Stuffed With Laotian Lamb Larb Recipe

Cabbage Sarma stuffed with Laotian Lamb Larb

Juicy ground lamb, crunchy peanuts, and spicy chilis are all wrapped in a cabbage roll. This keto dinner is the perfect substitute for traditional burgers, especially for hot summer weeknights because it only takes 30 minutes to make.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Laotian
Servings 2 people
Calories 1030 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • ½ cup unsalted peanuts
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil plus ½ tablespoon, divided
  • 4 garlic cloves peeled and smashed
  • 1 pound ground lamb
  • kosher salt
  • 1 large shallot peeled and thinly sliced
  • 5 scallions thinly sliced
  • 3 dried chili d'arbol seeds removed and crushed
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons torn mint leaves
  • ½ cup roughly chopped fresh basil leaves
  • 2 drops lemongrass essential oil
  • 1 drop marjoram essential oil
  • green cabbage quartered and leaves separated
  • roughly chopped fresh cilantro leaves for garnish

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 350F. Arrange the peanuts in a single layer on a baking sheet and toast in the oven for 6 to 8 minutes, or until golden brown and fragrant. Allow to cool slightly then chop into small pieces.
  • While the peanuts are baking, prepare the other ingredients. 
  • Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add the garlic and using a wooden spoon, smash them down into the hot oil until they break into smaller pieces. Keep this up for about 2 minutes, continuously mashing the garlic around in the oil until it becomes golden brown, but not burnt.
  • Add the ground lamb to the skillet with a pinch of salt. Stir the lamb into the garlic, mashing it down to really infuse the flavor into the meat. Continue doing this for about 3 minutes or until no clumps remain and meat is no longer pink. Remove the skillet from the heat immediately to prevent overcooking. Do not drain off the fat.
  • With the skillet still off the heat, add the shallots, scallions, chilis, lime juice, fish sauce, mint, basil, and half of the peanuts. Whisk the essential oils into the remaining half tablespoon of olive oil, then fold it into the lamb larb. Gently stir to combine all ingredients.
  • Transfer lamb larb to a bowl with a large spoon. Arrange cabbage leaves on a platter with the remaining peanuts and the cilantro in ramekins. To serve, spoon the lamb larb into a cabbage leaf and garnish with peanuts and cilantro. Roll the leaf around the meat, then eat it with your hands. 
Keyword 30 minute meals, cabbage sarma, fast easy meals, keto lamb recipes, keto recipes, lamb larb, stuffed cabbage, summer recipes
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Savory Chilled Strawberry Soup

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Serves: 6 | Total Time: 15 Minutes

This cold strawberry soup is fully strawberry and yet fully savory. 

You may be asking, how can this be? 

It is similar to how strawberries and balsamic vinegar work nicely together, or how black pepper brings out a richness in strawberries that may otherwise be hiding.

The inspiration behind this cold strawberry soup recipe came over a decade ago when I was working at a golf club on the east coast. The chef created a strawberry gazpacho and eagerly wanted me to try it – without telling me what was all in it. 

I expected sweet – but was met with savory – which made sense because he wanted to serve this cold fruit soup as an appetizer on that week’s menu.

“Shallots!” Chef told me fervently, “Shallots are the secret!” …along with a little basil and three kinds of cream.

Like a fine wine, the first pop of savory fruit flavor melts into velvety, herby aromatics that pleasantly linger. 


Savory Chilled Strawberry Soup

Total Time: 15 Minutes

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 pounds fresh strawberries, stems removed and cut in half
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup whole milk ricotta
  • 2 ounces mascarpone
  • 2 teaspoons chopped shallot
  • 1 drop basil essential oil
  • 1 drop black pepper essential oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon white balsamic vinegar
  • a pinch of salt to taste
  • fresh chives, for garnish
  • fresh ground black pepper, for garnish

RECIPE DIRECTIONS:

1. Puree the strawberries in an electric blender.

2. Add all other ingredients to the blender and pulse to combine. When well mixed, taste and adjust the salt if necessary. This should be a savory soup, but too much salt will overpower the delicate flavors of the fruit. Start with a small pinch, then slowly add more, if desired. 

3. Serve chilled in small bowls with a swirl of heavy cream. Garnish with fresh chives and a grind of black pepper.

Cold Strawberry Soup
Strawberry Gazpacho
Cold Strawberry Soup

Savory Chilled Strawberry Soup

An amazing summer soup recipe idea! Try this chilled strawberry soup to serve as an appetizer with your next home-cooked, gourmet meal. It is definitely strawberry, yet delicately savory and complex… your dinner guests will never know it only takes 15 minutes to make.
Total Time 15 mins
Course Appetizer, Soup
Servings 6
Calories 130 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 2 pounds fresh strawberries stems removed and cut in half
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup whole milk ricotta
  • 2 ounces mascarpone
  • 2 teaspoons chopped shallot
  • 1 drop basil essential oil
  • 1 drop black pepper essential oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 pinch salt to taste
  • fresh chives for garnish
  • fresh ground black pepper for garnish

Instructions
 

  • Puree the strawberries in an electric blender.
  • Add all other ingredients to the blender and pulse to combine. When well mixed, taste and adjust the salt if necessary. This should be a savory soup, but too much salt will overpower the delicate flavors of the fruit. Start with a small pinch, then slowly add more, if desired.
  • Serve chilled in small bowls with a swirl of heavy cream. Garnish with fresh chives and a grind of black pepper.
Keyword cold soup, cold strawberry soup, creamy strawberry soup, fruit gazpacho recipes, savory fruit soup, savory strawberry gazpacho
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Creamy Herb and Prosciutto Stuffed Mushrooms

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Serves: 4 | Total Time: 50 Minutes

I just love these prosciutto stuffed mushrooms. They are so savory and creamy and to be honest, every time I make them, I just have them for my whole meal!

These stuffed mushrooms make a great appetizer, too. If you are hosting a party and want to lesson the workload in the kitchen the day of the event, remove the stems from the mushrooms a day in advance. You can also whip up the filling and keep it covered in the fridge overnight. Then the next day, all you need to do is stuff ’em and bake ’em!

I use button mushrooms because they are relatively easy to get, but feel free to use shiitake or portobello, whatever you prefer. If you do use a larger mushroom, add a few minutes of bake time to the recipe and keep checking them every couple of minutes. When the tops begin to brown, they are done!

Serve these at your next dinner party, and your keto-dieting friends will love you forever.


Creamy Herb and Prosciutto Stuffed Mushrooms

Total Time: 50 Minutes

(Prep: 30 Minutes / Cook: 20 Minutes )

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 lb. button mushrooms, stems and gills removed
  • 2 tablespoons shredded parmesan cheese
  • 4 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 4 oz. mascarpone, softened
  • 3 oz. prosciutto, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • shallot, finely chopped (about 1/4 cup)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

RECIPE DIRECTIONS:

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

2. In a large bowl, cream together the cream cheese, mascarpone, prosciutto, parsley, salt and pepper until well combined.

Cheesy Prosciutto Stuffed Mushrooms Appetizer

3. Heat the butter in a small skillet over medium heat until just melted. Add the shallot and sauté, stirring frequently, until translucent but not browned, about 2 minutes.


4. Transfer the hot shallots from the skillet to the bowl with the cream cheese mixture and stir vigorously until smooth.


5. Spoon the cream cheese filling into the mushrooms. Arrange the filled mushrooms on a parchment-lined baking sheet so that the stuffed side is facing up. Drizzle with olive oil.


6. Bake mushrooms for 18 minutes, or until the cream cheese mixture begins to brown. Cool for a minute or two before serving.

Stuffed Mushroom Appetizer Keto Recipe Idea
Stuffed Mushrooms Keto Recipe

Creamy Herb and Prosciutto Stuffed Mushrooms

These keto stuffed mushrooms make a great appetizer, or have 'em as an entree. They're filled with prosciutto, herbs, and a savory blend of creamy cheeses – you'll never believe you're on a diet!
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 50 mins
Course Appetizer
Servings 4

Ingredients
  

  • 1 pound button mushrooms stems and gills removed
  • 2 tablespoons shredded parmesan cheese
  • 4 ounces cream cheese softened
  • 4 ounces mascarpone softened
  • 3 ounces prosciutto finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 shallot finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  • In a large bowl, cream together the cream cheese, mascarpone, prosciutto, parsley, salt and pepper until well combined.
  • Heat the butter in a small skillet over medium heat until just melted. Add the shallot and sauté, stirring frequently, until translucent but not browned, about 2 minutes.
  • Transfer the hot shallots from the skillet to the bowl with the cream cheese mixture and stir vigorously until smooth.
  • Spoon the cream cheese filling into the mushrooms. Arrange the filled mushrooms on a parchment-lined baking sheet so that the stuffed side is facing up. Drizzle with olive oil.
  • Bake mushrooms for 18 minutes, or until the cream cheese mixture begins to brown. Cool for a minute or two before serving.
Keyword keto appetizer recipes, prosciutto stuffed mushrooms, stuffed mushrooms, stuffed mushrooms appetizer
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