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8.8.12

CHICKEN CORDON BLEU


Here is something French with a Hungarian memory. The first time I had this was up in the Vár in Budapest in a lovely medieval themed restaurant. Guszti, one of my brothers ordered it for me and my girls. He said you will all like this and he was right. For years I classified cordon bleu as an exotic French dish, until a popular North American frozen food manufacturer made it into an every day thing. I never actually bought a package, me being a sworn enemy of over-ingredienced convenience foods. I make this occasionally for nostalgia’s sake, even though Jim would rather forgo the cheese and the ham. Because of this, I switched the cooked ham for a slice of smoked prosciutto, it is thinner and seems to blend into the chicken meat. Also I use thin slices of Canadian Swiss Cheese, that too is a milder cheese and the man finds it more agreable with his meat than the traditional gruyére. The recipe is for two servings, increase the ingredients as needed.

2 pieces of boneless chicken breast
salt
2 Swiss cheese slices
2 ham slices [I use smoked prosciutto]
1/2 cup flour
1 egg lightly beaten
1 cup fine breadcrumbs
oil for frying

• Remove fatty bits and any bone that may be lodged in the chicken.
• Set each chicken breast on a cutting board on its side and butterfly [cut each to half its original thickness].
• Cover with plastic wrap and pound each breast peace until it is 1/4 inch thick.
• Lightly salt it.
• Place a slice of ham and a slice of Swiss cheese on one half of each breast meat.
• Fold the meat over enveloping the ham and cheese.
• Press them together between the palms of your hands and set them aside.
• Line up 3 plates side by side.
• Add flour to the first, egg to the second and fine breadcrumbs to the third plate.
• Hint: You will want a well sealed envelope of breading around the chicken pieces to keep the cheese from running out during frying. It is important therefore to drench the chicken pieces at each stage of coating, not leaving any part uncovered. Use your hands transferring the chicken from flour to eggs and then to the breadcrumbs. You could use two forks, but I find it easier to use my hands. This allows me to press the breading into the meat and thus forming a well sealed crust around the chicken.
• Dip one of the prepared chicken pieces into flour first, coating it completely and press together.
• Next dip it into the beaten egg, once again coating it completely.
• Finally, place the chicken into the breadcrumbs; coat it completely and press together.
• Coat the remaining chicken.
• In a deep skillet place about 3/4 inch of oil.
• Place it on medium heat and heat up the oil for frying.
• Carefully slide the breaded chicken pieces into the oil and fry them uncovered until golden and crispy on both sides. Turn the chicken a few times, gently, with two forks, but do not puncture the meat.
• Transfer the golden crispy fried chicken pieces to a paper towel lined plate for a couple of minutes and then serve.

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It began with posting a few recipes on line for my family. "zsuzsa is in the kitchen" has more than 1000 Hungarian and International recipes. What started out as a private project turned into a well visited blog. The number of visitors long passed the two million mark. I organized my recipes into an on-line cookbook. On top of the page click on the cookbook to access the recipes. I am not profiting from my blog, so my visitors will not be harassed with advertising or flashy gadgets. Feel free to cut and paste my recipes for your own use. Publication is permitted as long as it is in your own words and with your own photographs. However, I would ask you for an acknowledgement and link-back to my blog. This is to my old on-line friends and visitors: policing the comment section for spam and answering questions has become a chore. Good wishes to you all, happy cooking and keep on feeding your people with good food.

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