Chicken Saltimbocca by Larry Andersen



Saltimbocca means to jump into the mouth. In Europe it is usually a veal dish whereas in the United States chicken seems to be favored. In its simplest form it is the veal or chicken, seasoned with fresh sage leaves, and wrapped in prosciutto. That is pan fried in oil and finished in a wine and butter reduction sauce. There are many, many versions of this dish. In our version we feature Swiss cheese and baby spinach. We hope you enjoy it as much as we do.

Preparation: 45 minutes Life Experience Recipe
Serves 4 persons
  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 4 slices Swiss cheese
  • Flour for dredging
  • cup chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • Lemon wedges for serving
  • Diced or sliced pimentos (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley for garnish (optional)
  • 8 slices prosciutto
  • 8 fresh sage leaves
  • 1 cup baby spinach leaves
  • cup white wine
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/3 cup diced shallots
  • 1 4-ounce can sliced button mushrooms, drained (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons capers, rinsed (optional)
  1. Butterfly chicken breast and lightly pound to even thickness. Lightly season with salt and pepper to taste. Place a layer of baby spinach leaves, next a slice of Swiss cheese on the open breast. Cover the cheese with more baby spinach leaves, garnish with pimento if desired, then fold the chicken over to make breast whole.
  2. Place a few fresh sage leaves on each breast. Wrap each breast snugly with a slice of prosciutto being careful not to tear the ham. Use toothpicks if needed to hold the chicken bundle together and maintain the shape. Season with salt and pepper if desired.

  3. Dredge in flour and shake off the excess only a thin dusting of flour is needed. Set aside. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large flat oven-proof skillet over medium heat (a paella pans works well for this as well as making a serving platter). Saut the chicken breasts, sage side down, for 2 minutes or until light golden brown. Turn breasts over and cook an additional 2 minutes or until light golden brown. Remove to a plate and cover with foil to keep warm.

  4. Add the shallots and stir fry for 1 or 2 minutes. Deglaze pan with the wine, scrapping to get all the brown bits. Continue simmering until reduced by half. Add chicken broth and simmer until reduced by half again. Sauce should be thickening continue a few minutes more if needed for desired consistency. Add the butter, mushrooms and capers, stirring to mix, during the last few minutes of cooking.

  5. Place pan in a pre-heated 350 oven for 10 to 15 minutes to finish cooking. Remove from oven and allow to rest for 10 minutes before serving. I like to serve the saltimbocca over some wide egg noodles. Spoon sauce over the chicken as desired. Drizzle with lemon juice as desired and sprinkle with the chopped parsley for garnish.

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Latest revision done September 2014
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