5 large or 6 medium sized Chicken Breasts
18-20 slices of Streaky Bacon
For your stuffing;
4 slices of white bread made into breadcrumbs
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 tsp of dried sage or 4 tsp of freshly chopped sage
2 eggs, lightly beaten
Half a teaspoon of salt and a few good grinds of fresh black pepper.
- Firstly, make your stuffing, this needs to be cool before you use it. Chop your onions into a fine dice and sweat them gently in a knob of butter (or oil if you prefer) You’ll want the onions to be soft, but not browned. If they do start to brown turn the heat right down and add a splash of water from a hot kettle and continue to cook until they are soft and translucent.
- Mix your herbs, breadcrumbs, sage and salt and pepper together in a large bowl. Add the onions and mix thoroughly.
- Add the beaten egg and mix till all the ingredients are combined.
For the roulade;
- Make a large rectangle of foil, roughly 70cm x 50cm, use 2 sheets overlapping if you need to, and begin with your bacon.
- The bacon needs to be stretched out, use the back of a dinner knife. Hold the base of your rasher firmly, apply gentle pressure with the back of the knife and push away from yourself. Repeat till all the rashers are stretched to roughly the same length. Now lay them in the centre of your foil, overlapping slightly to make a rectangle.
- Make one or two slashes in the thickest part of the chicken breasts and then pound them to even them out. I use a heavy frying pan for this with the chicken in between two pieces of clingfilm. Place your chicken breasts on top of the bacon, slashed sides down, keep them close together leaving no gaps.
- Add your stuffing in a thick sausage shape down the centre and using the foil to help you, roll the roulade away from yourself. Twist the ends of the foil in opposite directions to tighten the roulade. It should look a little like a giant Christmas cracker. Chill in the fridge, join side down, for at least 4 hours or up to 24hrs before you want to cook it.
- Preheat your oven to 190 degrees/gas mark 5, cook your roulade on a baking tray, for the first 30 minutes still wrapped. Then remove the foil carefully and cook again for a further 30 minutes till the bacon fat is golden and crisp.
- Remove from the oven and allow to rest for around 10 minutes, this makes the carving much easier.