We often feature this recipe in our San Francisco cooking classses!
2 quarts water
1/2 cup kosher salt
1/2 cup sugar
1 bay leaf
2 garlic cloves, smashed
1 teaspoon black peppercorn, coarsely smashed
8 6-ounce boneless chicken half breasts
8 six-ounce chicken breast halves, skinless, boneless
1 cup Italian Fontina, grated
8 large basil leaves
8 thin slices prosciutto
2 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Preheat Oven to 400ºF.
Brine: Mix water, salt, sugar, bay leaf, garlic and black peppercorns. Immerse the chicken in the brine and refrigerate for 1/2 hour-1 hour. Remove from the brine and pat dry.
Prepare Chicken: Cut into the thick side of each chicken breast to create a pocket; do not cut all the way through. Stuff each pocket with about 2 Tablespoons of Fontina and a basil leaf. Close the chicken pockets, tucking in any filling. Slightly flatten the breast with your hand.
Wrap Chicken: Lay a piece of prosciutto horizontally on the work surface, being very careful as to not rip the slice. Lay the chicken presentation side down (side where skin would have been) on the prosciutto with the small tip of the breast pointing to you. Wrap the breast with the prosciutto.
Cook Chicken: In a large skillet, heat the olive oil until simmering. Working in batches, place the chicken in the pan, presentation side down. Cook over medium heat until the prosciutto is golden, about 2 minutes. Turn and cook the other side for 1 minute more. Transfer to a sheet pan. Once all of the breasts are browned, place sheet pan into the oven and cook for about 8-10 minutes or until a thermometer inserted into the center of the breast reads 150ºF.
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