Smoky Chicken Sausage Roll
Or: The Story of How I Got Tired of Waiting For Fall
It's fall here in north Texas, except it's not. Today for example – 87 degrees. I want my big hoodies and warm socks, DAMMIT. Sometimes I just get fed up with the nonsense and cook whatever I want, weather be damned. These chicken rolls are the bees, and I hope you like them too. I maybe should have warned you it was a really short story. A tweet, maybe. “The Tweet of How I Got Tired of Waiting For Fall.” Hmm. Doesn't have the same ring to it … story it is.
4 boneless skinless chicken boobs
2 small sweet peppers
1 smoked sausage link of your choice
Pinch of red pepper flakes
Instructions (scroll to bottom for printable version):
Trim the fat from the chicken, then pound them out to about 1/4 inch thick. I usually put the chicken, one piece at a time, into a sturdy ziploc bag and use the flat side of my meat mallet to gently smunch the chicken into submission. If you're fancy, you can use chicken cutlets and this part will be less work. We are not fancy, and like to do things the hard way.
Dice the potato, peppers, and sausage link into teeny pieces. If you have a food processor, that'll work too. Just use whatever magical setting is necessary to whiz tiny pieces. I don't have one, so I can't help you there.
Mix diced vegetables, sausage, and red pepper in a bowl. You can add a dash of salt if you like, but I find the saltiness from the sausage and bacon are plenty. Red pepper is optional, if you don't like a bit of spice just leave it out.
Spoon 1-2 tbsp of mix onto each flattened chicken breast, spreading evenly. Lay your bacon strips out side by side, wide enough to span the width of your chicken. Starting from the long side, roll the chicken up into a nice fat roll. Place the roll onto the waiting bacon strips and roll it up again. Place the chicken roll on a baking tray so the loose ends of the bacon are facing downward.
When you're all done, pop them into a preheated 400* oven and bake for 30 mins. Check for doneness with a thermometer inserted into the fattest part of the roll – the FDA says chicken should be 165* F for safe eating.
In Conclusion (because apparently this is an 8th grade essay)
I made these on a day that was most definitely NOT fall-like. I ran the oven and made the kitchen (and myself) too hot. Then, I cranked the AC (or did I uncrank it? It's so confusing. Did I turn it down because the temperature goes lower? Or did I turn it up because I'm literally upping the amount it has to work? I.DON'T.KNOW.) we put on hoodies, and we ate our nice hot comforting chicken bacon sausage potato unicorn happiness in anti-summer bliss.
This basic recipe can be modified to approximately infinity*. Use whatever ingredients you have on hand for the filling, experiment, make something BOSS! Then tag me in your delicious pics, or pop in on Facebook and share your version. We like to EAT in this house, and I'd love to see what you make (so I can make it too!).
*This recipe is not available without meat. I mean, it is, but then you're essentially baking a pile of sweet peppers and potatoes wrapped in imagination and desperate longing for what could have been. As delicious as that sounds … I'll take my bacon, thank you.