Stuffed Chicken Breasts With Oatmeal

The Editors
Makes 4 servings.
2006 Old Farmer's Almanac
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This recipe, submitted by Ginger M. from Rancho Palo Verdes, California, won 3rd prize in the 2005 Reader Recipe Contest for oatmeal. 

5 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
3 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
1/2 cup red-wine or rice vinegar
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter, softened
1/2 cup quick-cooking oats
1/2 cup toasted pine nuts
1 sweet onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
salt and pepper, to taste
4 boneless chicken breast halves, skin on
1/4 cup canola oil

For vinaigrette: Combine all vinaigrette ingredients in a bottle or a bowl. Shake or whisk to combine. Set aside.

For chicken: In a bowl, mix butter, oatmeal, pine nuts, onion, garlic, salt, and pepper. Set aside.

Lay chicken breasts on their sides and, with a small paring knife, slice through each, making a pocket. Do not cut through the bottom or top of the breast. Stuff each pocket with oatmeal mixture. Wrap each breast with string, stretching the chicken skin over the pocket opening to hold the stuffing in place. Tie to secure. Season with salt and pepper.

In a skillet over medium-high heat, warm the oil. Add chicken, skin side down. Cover pan and cook for 10 to 12 minutes. Turn breasts over, cover pan, and cook for 10 minutes more. Chicken is done when it is pierced and the juices run clear. Remove chicken from skillet and place on a platter. Remove string. Immediately drizzle with herb vinaigrette, reserving some to pass at the table.

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