I only really started getting into cooking about 10 years ago due mainly to the necessity of creating fresh and healthy meals for our little Cavalier fur-baby; from the first day he arrived he turned his nose up at dog food. This eventually extended into a passionate embrace of home-cooking in general.
There weren’t a myriad of excuses as to why I didn’t cook – in fact there were just two – a lack of time and cooking ability. In hindsight the “I can’t cook” stance permeated from I can’t be bothered cooking. It was just easier to go out for dinner 3-4 times a week.
So, this will give you some insight into the meals I do prepare – for me it’s all about simplicity, healthy goodness and taste and although these chicken and asparagus rolls look complicated to make – trust me - they’re not.
At home, I hardly ever eat or cook with butter however, in 2012, I chanced upon an artisan dairy producer in Sydney who was making cultured butter. Unfortunately, Australia still sees cultured butter as a gourmet delicacy however it’s considered much more mainstream in Europe.
I used Pepe Saya cultured butter in this recipe to make a white wine and herb reduction to drizzle over the Chicken and Asparagus Rolls. This dish isn’t my usual vegan, low fat, gluten free, dairy free style dish but the flavours and the dish itself is simply … delicious.
Chicken and Asparagus Rolls with a white wine and herb reduction using Pepe Saya cultured butter.
Ingredients 2 chicken breasts (skin-less)
1 bunch asparagus (halved)
150-180g Fetta cheese (Danish style – smooth)
Handful fresh herbs (thyme, basil, sage, oregano)
5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon Pepe Saya cultured butter 1-1.5 cups white wine
Salt and pepper to taste
Slice the chicken breasts in half lengthwise and using a meat tenderiser, flatten the chicken pieces until relatively thin.
Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper.
Slice the fetta cheese and place 2-3 thin slices along the edge of each piece of chicken breast then position 2-3 pieces of asparagus on top of the fetta.
Starting from the fetta and asparagus lined end of the chicken, roll the chicken tightly onto itself and secure with toothpicks.
Asparagus and Fetta Cheese are the centre filling of these chicken rolls.
Drizzle a large frying pan with extra virgin olive oil (approximately 5-6 tablespoons) and the cultured butter.
When the oil and butter are hot add the fresh herbs and sauté for a couple of minutes then reduce the heat to medium. Add the chicken rolls and cook until the chicken starts to turn slightly golden in colour.
Cook the chicken rolls by sautéing in extra virgin olive oil, cultured butter, fresh herbs and white wine.
Add the white wine and continue cooking the chicken, ensuring to cook the chicken evenly on all sides. Cook for approximately 20 minutes.
Pre-heat the oven to 180°C. Remove the toothpicks from the chicken and asparagus rolls and place into a baking dish.
Drizzle a little of the pan juices over the chicken rolls. Cover with alfoil paper.
Bake the chicken rolls in the oven for approximately 10-minutes. This will ensure the inside of the chicken is full cooked and moist.
Remove the toothpicks from the chicken rolls and place into a baking dish. Cover with alfoil paper and bake for 10 minutes.
While the chicken is baking, add a little extra white wine and cultured butter to the pan juices and bring to the boil then reduce to a low heat and simmer until you have a wine and herb reduction.
Remove the chicken and asparagus rolls from the oven and plate up.
Just before serving, drizzle the wine and herb reduction liberally over each chicken and asparagus roll then serve immediately.