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Italian chicken

Preparation time: 25 minutes.
Cooking time: 1 hour.
Oven temperature: 180°C, 350°F, gas 4.
Calories: 274 per portion

ingredients

serves 4
4 chicken breasts, skinned and boned
50 g (2 oz) lean ham, cut into 4 pieces
150 ml (1/4 pint) chicken stock
1 red pepper, seeded and sliced
watercress sprigs, to garnish

for the stuffing

40 g (1 1/2 oz) wholemeal breadcrumbs
25 g (1 oz) Parmesan cheese, grated
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 teaspoons chopped parsley
1 tablespoon dry sherry
salt and pepper

method

1. Mix together the stuffing ingredients, with salt and pepper to taste, and press to the underside of the chicken breasts. Place a piece of ham over the top.

2. Arrange the chicken in a casserole, pour over the stock and add the red pepper.

3. Cover and cook in the oven for 1 hour, or until the chicken is cooked, basting occasionally with the liquid. Garnish with watercress.

Freshly grated Parmesan would always be used by any Italian who prided themselves on their cooking. Most large supermarkets now sell small blocks of Parmesan as well as drums of the grated kind.

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