Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Pesto Chicken Roll-Ups


Some of my girlfriends from home and I threw a dinner party once during college.  I will never forget that dinner party.  Mostly because that was the day I woke up with a kidney stone, but also because we made the best alfredo sauce I've ever tasted.  We also made the above pesto chicken roll-ups. When we made it that day for the dinner party, I remember my mom had the recipe--rather, the ingredients, scribbled on the back of an envelope.  Unable to find that same scrap of paper, I recreated best I could what we made that night.  This is SO simple but looks so fancy!

Start with three large chicken breasts.  Flatten them with a meat mallet, then cut them into strips.
You want them to be pretty flat, because you will be rolling them up.


Place a slice of Swiss cheese on each flattened chicken strip.
Again, you want them to be kind of thin (thinner than what I did).


Next spoon 1-2 Tbsp of pesto over each slice of cheese.  
Don't overload each piece because it will squish out if there's too much.


Starting at one end, roll each piece of chicken and secure with a few toothpicks.
Place on greased sheet of foil on a baking pan.
Bake at 375 degrees for 20-30 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through.


You can remove the toothpicks once the chicken come out
of the oven; they should stay rolled up.


Pesto
3 large garlic cloves
1/2 cup pine nuts (I used macadamia nuts)
2/3 cup coarsely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
3 cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves
2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

With food processor running, drop in garlic and finely chop.  Stop motor and add nuts, cheese, salt, pepper, and basil, then process until finely chopped.  With motor running, add oil, blending until incorporated but not completely smooth.  Cover the surface with plastic wrap and keep refrigerated, for up to 1 week.

source:  recipe from The Gourmet Cookbook


Pesto Chicken Roll-Ups
1 cup pesto, homemade or store-bought
deli-thin slices of Swiss cheese, cut to fit chicken strips
3 large chicken breasts (2-2.5 pounds total)

Flatten chicken with a meat mallet until very thin.  Cut into strips.  Place one slice of Swiss cheese on top of each chicken strip.  Spoon 1-2 Tbsp pesto on top of each slice of cheese.  Starting at one end, roll chicken up and secure with several toothpicks.  Place on greased sheet of foil on baking pan. Bake at 375 degrees for 20-30 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through.

35 comments:

  1. the more recipes i see from you, the more i wish i could go to a dinner party you're hosting.

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  2. All you had to say was the word Pesto. I am all over this!

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  3. Oh Noooosss I have heard kidney stones are the worst. Ouchie!

    This just might be one of my favorite recipes you have posted to date!! Making this when I get home for sure. pinning this now so I dont forget!

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  4. wow this seems super easy especially since I already make my own pesto. I can totally see this winning my friends over and making me look like a hero :) haha Thanks.

    xoxo
    FAKE EMPIRE
    ww.shopFAKE.com

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  5. We love rolled up food. We make salmon and cream cheese roll ups, spinach salad roll ups, usually cold foods. These look delicious and both of my daughters love pesto.

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  6. dang girl - these look life changing :) I am a huge fan of pesto


    xoxo, chrissy
    The Perfect Palette

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  7. This looks really yummy! And I'm glad you to hear you used macadamia nuts for the pesto!

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  8. So. Hungry. Your posts always make me so hungry!!!

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  9. These look incredible! Love, love chicken and pesto. Trying them this week!

    Just found your blog, love it!

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  10. YUM! I wish my hubby liked chicken! These look delicious!

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  11. yum these look so good!!

    xo Jackie
    http://livingaftermidnite.blogspot.com

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  12. YUM! Our basil is overtaking our garden, so this might be the solution! : ) Thanks for sharing!

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  13. i want to eat at your house! i love pesto~

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  14. i LOVED that night! such fun memories!

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  15. This looks so good! I really should try this since I've got a bajillion basil leaves in my garden!

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  16. That was such a fun dinner night! I remember using a few more toothpicks to hold everything together though...hahaha!

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  17. Goodness ... these look delish!

    ♥ Cat brideblu

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  18. Girl, you are rocking in the kitchen! I agree with you, this looks fancy but is easy to make.

    Horrible to hear about the kidney stones. That must have been awful!

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  19. seriously this would be awesome for a dinner party!

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  20. I love pesto! Oo I wonder if I can replicate this with flounder or soul.

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  21. this would be perfect for a party! i can't believe how easy they are.

    Sam @ fitness food & faith

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  22. Yum! I'm imagining how good that pesto tastes.

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  23. Those look SOO good!! I need to try those!!

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  24. wow sherri lynn these look amazing great job on the recipe, what a yummy dinner!

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  25. I love pesto and this is a perfect way to use the basil I am trying to grow (aka, trying to not kill)! Thanks for sharing!!

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  26. Oooh, that looks good. I love pesto. I may try a variation of this with cooked chicken and the cheese/pesto in a crescent roll. I never thought about using pesto in my recipe!

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  27. pesto is one of my favorite sauce for pasta! i think this recipe is genius and yummy!!!!!

    xx
    http://www.trend-ish.com

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  28. Wow! This looks delicious...and so fancy! Great for hosting a party!

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  29. That was such a fun night! We were all wearing your mom's aprons and thinking we were so domesticated. And none of us were married at the time, and now almost everyone who was there, is! And yes, I do remember that the alfredo was AMAZING!

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  30. Now this is something I definitely need to try...maybe for dinner tonight! Yum!!!

    xo

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  31. I LOVE chicken so I am all for these! I am definitely going to have to try them!

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  32. this looks amazing! mouth watering....

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