Hasselback Chicken Cordon Bleu combines all your favourite flavours into one easy mid-week dinner!
• 2 large chicken breasts, skin removed
• 100g sliced ham
• 400g cooking mozzarella
• 200g plain flour, seasoned with ½ tsp each salt and white pepper
• 2 eggs, well beaten
• 250g breadcrumbs
• 1 litre vegetable oil, for deep frying
• Rocket salad, to serve.
1. Position the chicken breasts skin side up, with a long edge towards you. Use a sharp knife to make slits, 0.75cm apart, from left to right across the short part of the breast.
2. Cut the mozzarella and ham into pieces the same size as the slits in the chicken, then add one piece of cheese, and one piece of ham, to each slit. Repeat this with each chicken breast, then prepare your pane mix.
3. Season the flour and put it into a shallow dish. Beat the eggs and put them into another a shallow dish. Put the breadcrumbs into a third shallow dish.
4. Carefully pane each piece of chicken. Keeping the breasts hassleback side up - put the chicken first into the flour. Spoon flour over it and work it into each slit. Transfer the chicken breast into the beaten egg, and spoon the egg over it, again working it into the slits. Then repeat this with the breadcrumbs. Carefully put the chicken breast onto a baking sheet and repeat with the rest of the chicken. Freeze the chicken breasts for 4 hours, or overnight.
5. To cook the chicken: preheat the oven to 200C (180C fan).
6. Heat 1 litre of vegetable oil to 180C for deep frying. Remove the chicken from the freezer and add one piece to the hot oil. Cook for 5 minutes - keeping an eye on it to keep it hassleback side up, so that the cheese and ham don’t fall out. After five minutes, it should be nicely browned. Carefully take it out of the oil with a slotted spoon, and put it onto a baking tray and into the hot oven. Cook it for another 20 minutes until cooked through. Then serve immediately with a rocket salad.