Archive for November 5th, 2011

Here’s a simple chicken dish that’s impressive enough for company. You pound out a few chicken breasts, spread them with a simple hazelnut and parsley pesto, and then roll them up and grill them. A sweet-sour-salty glaze of mustard mixed with molasses creates a browned sheen on the chicken rolls.

TIMING
Prep: 25 minutes (plus 5 minutes for glaze)
Grill: 10 to 15 minutes.

BBQ TOOLS AND EQUIPMENT
– Long-handled tongs
– Long-handled basting brush.

THE GRILL
Gas: Direct heat, medium (350°F)
Clean, oiled grate on lowest setting
Charcoal:
Direct heat, medium ash
12-by-12-inch charcoal bed (about 3 dozen coals)
Clean, oiled grate on lowest setting
Wood:
Direct heat, medium ash
12-by-12-inch bed, 3 to 4 inches deep
Clean, oiled grate set 4 inches above the fire.

INGREDIENTS (MAKES 4 SERVINGS)
½ cup hazelnuts
6 cloves garlic
½ cup flat-leaf parsley leaves
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, about 1½ pounds
No-stick spray oil
Oil for coating grill grate
½ cup Mustard-Molasses Glaze.

DIRECTIONS
1. Toast the hazelnuts in a skillet over medium heat, shaking the pan occasionally, until fragrant and lightly browned, about 5 minutes. If the nuts have skins, rub them in a kitchen towel to remove the skins.
2. Put the hazelnuts, garlic, parsley, olive oil, salt, and pepper in a small food processor and process until very finely chopped, scraping down the sides as necessary.
3. Put the chicken breasts, one at a time, between sheets of wax paper or plastic wrap, with the smooth side down. Pound with the flat side of a mallet or heavy skillet to an even ¼-inch thickness, being careful not to tear the meat.
4. Spread the hazelnut mixture over the chicken, leaving a ¼-inch border around the edges. Roll up jelly-roll style from a short side, pushing in the sides as you roll, to enclose the filling. Secure each roll with a wooden toothpick or short skewer and generously coat all over with spray oil.
5. Heat the grill as directed.
6. Brush and oil the grill grate, then grill the chicken until it is no longer pink and the filling is hot, 10 to 15 minutes total, turning often. Keep the grill lid down except to brush the chicken with the mustard glaze during the last 5 to 10 minutes of cooking. Cool slightly, then slice crosswise on a slight diagonal.

TIPS
– When pounding the chicken, sprinkle it with a few drops of water to prevent sticking. Begin pounding from the thickest part of the meat outward to encourage the meat to spread as it thins.
– To keep the toothpicks or skewers from burning on the grill, soak them in water for 20 minutes before using.
– To save time, buy skinless hazelnuts.

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