Node What You Eat

This is a fabulous dish for guests, scoring high for apparent complexity and gourmet ingredients whilst actually being quite simple to make and giving lots of time to focus on complicated side dishes or just to make conversation.

With a little practice, you can leave this fairly well unattended in the oven while you dine on an entree and then serve at the appropriate moment for the main course.

On the ingredients:

I prefer skinless chicken breasts and have never tried baking chicken breasts with skin on but it would probably work almost the same, just be careful the skin doesn't burn or char in the oven. You probably don't want to baste the skin much or at all.

For the wine, I used a Sauternes because it was at hand and it was excellent though any sweet, white, dessert wine would do. A Mon Bazillac would be fantastic or any Botrytis wine closer to home and even a Demi Sec would do well. Don't use a poor wine though, if it's not good enough to drink then it's not good enough to cook this with either. Bad wines should only be used in things like Stews where you need little more than the Tannin.

A word of warning on Truffles: when I made this I used 4 x 1 inch wide slices of Truffles and about half the Camembert I recommend here and although the result was nice the Truffle was thoroughly overpowering and I only got a brief taste of the herbs and wine on the outside of the chicken. As soon as I bit into a piece of the chicken, the Camembert and the chicken itself could barely be tasted. Unless you want the Truffle to be the absolutely dominating taste, I would be stingy with it. Truffles are powerful tasting things and should be used sparingly.

On substitutes for Truffles: you could probably use Morels (though I've never cooked with them) which are a bit cheaper or various other sorts of fungi or mushrooms. I hate most mushrooms so am unwilling to research that particularly.


        Preheat your oven to about 225c (gas mark 7 for the Brits and 440f for the .USians)
        Construct a foil boat by taking a rectangle of foil and folding the edges inwards and upwards to form edges that will prevent leakages. The boat should be only slightly bigger than the chicken breast
        With a sharp, small knife, carefully cut a slit in the fat end of the chicken breast and use the knife to cut inwards and create a pocket
        Slice the Camembert into thin slivers and trim most of the rind (it's not important to get it all, just most of it)
        Slice or Shave the Truffle if required (use a Truffle Slicer if available, use a small, sharp knife, steady hand and great care if not)
        Slide the Camembert and Truffle inside the Chicken, distributing evenly and trying not to cover the Truffle with Camembert if possible (don't stress over it though, the Truffle won't appreciate being cooked in the Camembert oils but you aren't going to dim the taste of the Truffle much even if you try)
        Trim a scrap of chicken from somewhere else on the breast and use it to plug the slit you made and stuffed
        Using a pastry brush or your hands, brush or rub the oil over the Chicken Breast then sprinkle both sides with the Herbes Provencale so as to get a little everywhere but not to cover it at all
        Tie the finished product with string or if that's not possible (I do miss my own kitchen) then tuck the opening underneath, place it in the foil boat
        Pour the wine around the Chicken Breast and just a little over the top (not enough to wash off the oil and herbs)
        Place in the oven and bake for about 25 minutes or until the Chicken is cooked through
        Remove when the top is just slightly golden and you can cut through and not expose any pinkness. Remove from the foil and place on a plate. Tear a hole in the foil and pour the delicious liquid over the top, the combination of melted Camembert, sweet wine, chicken juices and herbs will be delicious

I recommend more of the same sweet wine used in the cooking, it will offset the Truffle and match the sauce on the chicken.