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National Chicken Cordon Bleu Day!

TODAY we celebrate a classic chicken dish with a twist enjoyed thru the years, the Chicken Cordon Bleu.

Chicken Cordon Bleu is a classic dish that consists of chicken breasts that are pounded thin, filled with ham and cheese, then breaded and either baked or fried. The name “Cordon Bleu” is derived from the French term for “blue ribbon,” which historically was used to denote a high level of culinary excellence. It is believed that Chicken Cordon Bleu originated in Switzerland, but it has since become a popular dish in many countries, particularly in Western cuisine.

The traditional method of making Chicken Cordon Bleu involves taking boneless, skinless chicken breasts and pounding them thin to create a flat surface for the filling. Thin slices of ham and cheese, such as Swiss or Gruyère, are then placed on top of the chicken breast, and the chicken is rolled up tightly around the filling. Toothpicks or kitchen twine are often used to hold the chicken breasts together. The chicken breasts are then coated in flour, dipped in beaten eggs, and coated in breadcrumbs before being either baked or fried until crispy and golden brown.

The result is a dish with a delicious combination of flavors, as the ham and cheese melt together inside the chicken breast, creating a gooey, savory filling. The crispy breadcrumb coating adds a satisfying crunch and contrasts well with the tender chicken and melted cheese. Chicken Cordon Bleu is often served as a main course with a side of vegetables, potatoes, or a salad.

Here’s a simple recipe that you can try if you are up to the challenge.

Ingredients:

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 4 slices of ham
  • 4 slices of Swiss cheese
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup seasoned breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Toothpicks
  • Oil for frying

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Lay the chicken breasts on a cutting board and pound them with a meat mallet until they are about 1/4 inch thick.
  3. Place a slice of ham and a slice of Swiss cheese on top of each chicken breast.
  4. Roll up each chicken breast tightly, tucking in the sides to keep the filling from falling out.
  5. Secure the chicken breasts with toothpicks.
  6. Season the flour with salt and pepper.
  7. Dredge the chicken breasts in the flour, shaking off any excess.
  8. Dip each chicken breast in the beaten eggs, then coat in the breadcrumbs mixed with Parmesan cheese, garlic powder, paprika, salt, and pepper.
  9. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  10. Fry the chicken breasts until golden brown, turning once, about 3 to 4 minutes per side.
  11. Remove the toothpicks and transfer the chicken breasts to a baking dish.
  12. Bake the chicken breasts in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until cooked through and the cheese is melted.
  13. Serve immediately with your favorite sides.

Variations:

  • Try using different types of cheese, such as cheddar or provolone.
  • Substitute the ham with prosciutto or bacon for a smoky flavor.
  • Add some chopped herbs or spices to the breadcrumb mixture for extra flavor.
  • For a healthier version, bake the chicken instead of frying it.
  • Serve with a creamy sauce, such as a Dijon mustard sauce or a white wine sauce.

So, why not give it a try in your kitchen and savor the deliciousness of this classic dish!