This Italian recipe from “giada’s ITALY” by Giada De Laurentiis is nothing less than superb! The finished dish is similar to dishes you would order in a fine Italian restaurant with the flavor to match. We made this dish after a long bike ride and wolfed it down feeling very satisfied after with leftovers for tomorrow.
I modified the recipe to use fontina and or parmesan cheese as I believe the flavors of these cheeses are superior to the provolone recommended by the recipe but use whatever cheese your tastes prefer. I also prefer the sun-dried tomatoes that are not packed in oil as they have a more vibrant red color and they aren’t oily…If you can’t find chicken cutlets, I just make some by cutting up some chicken breast. If you can’t find prosciutto or prefer not to use it, try black forest ham instead! The original recipe recommends Prosciutto di Parma. We used Prosciutto di San Daniele and it was delicious. These types of very high-quality prosciutto have been made for a very long time and are made in different regions of Italy but are both delicious!
I prefer more spices than the recipe called for, so I quadrupled the amount of oregano and doubled the amount of crushed red pepper flakes. Since there is already prosciutto or ham and they are quite salty, I don’t recommend increasing the salt in the recipe. My modification of adding a couple of teaspoons of fresh-squeezed lemon juice to the sauce enhanced the flavors of the dish and since you are already using the lemon zest it makes sense to add some of the juice.
Make your own chicken cutlets by slicing a chicken breast lengthwise to about 1/4 inch thickness. If you would like a more detailed description this article from Serious Eats is very detailed and helpful: https://www.seriouseats.com/2015/07/knife-skills-how-to-cut-chicken-breasts-into-cutlets.html
Grilled Chicken Involtini
Ingredients for the lemon zest sauce
- ¼ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley
- Zest of one lemon
- 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- ¼ teaspoon salt (optional)
Instructions for the lemon zest sauce:
- Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl stirring a few times to combine and set-aside.
Ingredients for the Chicken Involtini
- 2 teaspoons dried oregano
- ¾ teaspoon salt (optional)
- ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 8 chicken breast cutlets
- 8 thin slices prosciutto or ham (I prefer black forest if using ham)
- 8 slices parmesan or fontina cheese, or some of both
- 8 sun-dried tomatoes (or more if you prefer)
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil for drizzling on the chicken
Instructions for the Chicken Involtini:
- Make the seasoning by mixing the oregano, salt, and red pepper flakes together in a bowl.
- Preheat grill to medium-high heat.
- Season the chicken cutlets on both sides with the oregano/salt/red pepper mixture.
- Lay out a chicken cutlet and place a layer of cheese on top followed by the prosciutto or ham, and lastly one or more sun-dried tomatoes.
- Once each chicken cutlet has been prepared according to steps #3 and #4, roll up each chicken cutlet to form a roll and enclose the fillings. Skewer the chicken on two sides to hold it together.
- Drizzle the prepared chicken involtini with the 1 tablespoon olive oil and place the chicken skewers on the grill over the flame.
- Sear the chicken skewers on one side for 10 minutes and then flip them over to sear them on the other side for 10 minutes.
- Turn off one of the flames of the gas grill leaving the others on and continue to cook the chicken off of the flame using indirect heat and cook the chicken for approximately 5 minutes more on each side.
- Remove the chicken from the grill once it has reached an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Spoon the prepared lemon zest sauce over the chicken and serve immediately.
Source: Adapted from giada’s ITALY, 2018