Monday, April 9, 2012

Hamming it Up

The holiday weekend is over, and it’s back to reality.  This Easter was a little unusual for us.  My brother was unable to come home from college, so we’re going to celebrate further when my uncle comes to visit from Georgia in 2 weeks.  In the meantime, as is custom for most American (Christian) families this time of year, we ate our weight in ham… and then STILL had leftovers!
So what is a girl to do when she’s close to ham-overload?  Make Chicken Cordon Bleu.  I will add this disclaimer up front: I grew up eating my mom’s Chicken Cordon Bleu, and it is a non-breaded version of the surprisingly American dish.  If you want a good breading mixture to add to this recipe, I recommend referencing chef Tyler Florence’s recipe on
I also chose to serve this with our friend Jenny’s Spinach Currant Salad.  Together, it makes a very simple but elegant meal! 


*1 pkg. fresh spinach leaves
*2 oz. dried cranberries
*2 oz. sliced almonds
*2 oz. goat cheese
*¼ cup red wine vinegar
 *¼ cup EVOO
*¼ cup honey

Wash and drain the spinach leaves.
Garnish with dried cranberries, sliced almonds, and goat cheese.
In a separate bowl, whisk together red wine vinegar, EVOO, and honey.
Pour dressing over salad, toss well, and serve.


*Approx. 5 large chicken breasts
*1 pkg. sliced Double G ham
*1 pkg. sliced Swiss cheese
*1 can cream of chicken soup
*1-8 oz. container sour cream
*Salt and pepper to taste
*Parsley for garnish

Slice chicken breasts down the middle horizontally almost completely through.  (An alternative would be to flatten them with a kitchen mallet and roll them, but as Alton Brown says, you usually just wind up with meat mush.  I bought pre-sliced breasts and layered them like a sandwich.)
Stuff a slice of ham and a slice of cheese in the middle of the chicken breast.  Then, stick toothpicks in the top to hold the layers in place during cooking.  Place in a greased 9x13” casserole dish.
In a separate bowl, combine the cream of chicken soup and sour cream. Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Then, spread this over the chicken.
Bake covered at 350° for a minimum of 45 minutes, or until chicken has reached 170° internally.

And for further cooking assistance, here is a handy temperature chart for cooking meat:
Image courtesy of

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