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Best Italian Cook: Chicken Braciole by Bethany & Heather

by Keith Brunell - Dallas, TX | Written on February 10, 2012

Our recipe for Chicken Braciole with Hearty Trottole begins with a fun and flavorful interpretation of two Italian classics – Pasta all’Amatriciana and Braciole. We begin the sauce with typical components of butter, onions and pancetta. However, that is where the similarity to a traditional amatriciana ends. We scaled back the spiciness, smoothed it out with rich tomato paste, and added depth with robust Chianti to arrive at our delicious Hearty Pancetta Tomato Sauce.

Our braciole resembles a traditional recipe only in that we roll thinly pounded meat around a rich and flavorful filling, sear it quickly, then finish it by roasting it in a velvety red wine sauce. We substituted succulent chicken thighs for the traditional beef, and replaced the typical bread crumb/raisin stuffing with a piquant and flavorful ricotta and herb filling to arrive at our mouth-watering Chicken Braciole.

The whimsical top-shaped trattole not only stand up to our hearty sauce, but provide a nice mouth feel along with the tender, flavorful bites of chicken.
We believe that the flavors of our rich tomato sauce combined with the savory stuffed chicken, represent a beautiful and appealing dish that would blend in very well on Maggiano’s Menu.
Residents of Cedar Park, TX, Heather and Bethany began cooking together and developing recipes several years ago when they started an informal neighborhood cooking club. Bethany had the privilege of hosting her wedding reception at the original Maggiano’s restaurant in Chicago in 2003 and has continued to be an ardent fan ever since.

Tomato Sauce:
½ Large Yellow Onion, finely diced
6 Tbsp Unsalted Butter
8 oz Pancetta, diced
1 inch slice Parmigiano Reggiano Rind
1 ½ tsp Salt
½ tsp Freshly Cracked Black Pepper
½ to 1 tsp Red Pepper Flakes, to taste
6 oz Tomato Paste
¾ cup Chianti Riserva bottled by Renzo Masi & C., Rufina, Italy
1 ½ cups Chicken Broth
3 medium sprigs of fresh Oregano

Filling:
7 oz Whole Milk Ricotta
Zest of 1 small Lemon
½ cup Pecorino Romano, grated
2 Tbsp chopped Fresh Oregano
2 Tbsp chopped Fresh Sage
½ tsp Freshly Cracked Black Pepper
3 medium Garlic Cloves, crushed
¼ cup coarsely chopped Flat Leaf Parsley

Braciole:
4 lbs Chicken Thighs, pounded to ¼ inch thick
Garlic & Herb Filling (instructions above)
Kitchen Twine
4 Tbsp Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper
½ cup Chicken Broth
¼ cup Chianti Riserva bottled by Renzo Masi & C., Rufina, Italy
Juice of ½ small Lemon (approx. 1 Tbsp)
1 Tbsp Butter
1 Tbsp Fresh Italian Parsley, coarsely chopped, for garnish
2 Tbsp Fresh Pecorino Romano shavings, for Garnish

Pasta:
16 oz Trottole Pasta
¾ cup grated Pecorino Romano
Water
2 Tbsp. Salt

Instructions:
1. In a heavy bottomed Dutch oven, sauté onion in butter over medium high heat until translucent.

2. Add diced Pancetta and continue to sauté until lightly browned and onions are just beginning to caramelize.

3. Add salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Stir mixture until pepper is fragrant, approximate 5-10 seconds. Add tomato paste, incorporating well with onions and pancetta. Continue to sauté, stirring frequently, until tomato paste begins to darken slightly in spots, and becomes fragrant. Add wine, drop in Parmigiano Reggiano rind and bring to a simmer. Add chicken broth and drop in Oregano sprigs.

4. Cover and Simmer for 30-40 minutes to allow flavors to develop.

5. While the tomato sauce is simmering (approx. 1-2 minutes), mix all ingredients for the filling until just combined. Set aside while preparing chicken thighs.

6. Lay the chicken thighs flat with smooth side facing down. Spoon scant 2 Tbsp of garlic & herb filling onto the center of each thigh. Roll each thigh loosely around filling until ends overlap slightly. Tie each thigh with kitchen twine in two places to secure the roll. Do not roll too tightly, or the filling will come out!!!

7. Heat olive oil in a sauté pan on high. Generously salt and pepper chicken rolls and sear well on all sides.

8. Once the chicken rolls are browned on all sides, remove from the pan and set aside. Deglaze the pan by adding the wine and scrape up all the browned bits. Bring to a simmer, then add chicken broth, lemon juice, and butter. Bring back to a simmer. Add chicken rolls, along with their juices, back to the pan and roast in a 375 degree oven for 7 – 8 minutes until juices run clear.

9. Just before placing the chicken in the oven, add salt and Trottole to 4-5 quarts of rapidly boiling water. Cook for 9 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until al dente. Drain pasta. Add pasta to tomato sauce, and toss with ¾ cup grated Pecorino Romano. Keep warm until ready to serve.

10. Before serving, remove butcher’s twine* from the braciole. Begin the plate with a generous portion of pasta. Top with 2 Chicken Braciole, and garnish with chopped Italian Parsley and Pecorino Romano shavings.

VOTE NOW!

  • Maxfield-g

    Sound like it would taste very good.

  • Maxfield-g

    Sound like it would taste very good.

  • Maxfield-g

    Sound like it would taste very good.

  • Maxfield-g

    Sound like it would taste very good.

  • Mspeaches329

    That sound and look so good

  • Baileyp3

    looks good

  • Carole Conti

    This looks like a lot of work, but am sure the flavor is fabulous.  Trying it this week, and if Maggianos puts it on the menu, as well as the gnocchi I will be there

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Loretta-Barbera/1766905914 Loretta Barbera

    This sounds wonderful. I have always used beef but I try the new Chicken recipe.

  • Brunoelaine

    I love braciole I can’t wait to try this one

  • Pat Hart

    The Braciole sounds delicious! I agree that it is a lot of work but I go to Maggianno’s to enjoy good things that I  do not have time to cook.
    I hope to see it on the menu!

  • Pat Hart

    The Braciole sounds delicious! I agree that it is a lot of work but I go to Maggianno’s to enjoy good things that I  do not have time to cook.
    I hope to see it on the menu!

  • Cathy

    Yum, Yum

  • Cathy

    Yum, Yum

  • A. Dudley Tipton

    We’ve never tried Braciole, but, we want to try it at next visit!!!

  • Nanci

    sounds yummy!

  • Anen1110

    This truly takes one back to our Grandmas Kitchen..I can almost smell it and taste it..
    Because it is so much work..you can feature it only on the week ends..
    Good Luck..This is a keeper…

  • Anen1110

    This truly takes one back to our Grandmas Kitchen..I can almost smell it and taste it..
    Because it is so much work..you can feature it only on the week ends..
    Good Luck..This is a keeper…

  • P Chiapetto

    great way to make b raciole.I’ll try this at home soon.

  • http://www.facebook.com/sita.hoyt Sita Hoyt

    This is absolutely divine.  Better than mine.

  • http://www.facebook.com/sita.hoyt Sita Hoyt

    This is absolutely divine.  Better than mine.

  • http://www.facebook.com/sita.hoyt Sita Hoyt

    This is absolutely divine.  Better than mine.

  • Jvmv12

    Love Braciole.  Never made it with Chicken.  Will try.

  • Rfcatanese

    This sounds great.  I love braciole and make them once in awhile, but this is a new twist to an old Italian favorite. 

    Russ

  • Pambrooks67

    sounds heavenly.hope it shows on the menu or i will be forced to make myself..

  • Ain Alexander

    Looks and sounds Delicious!!!!!

  • Ain Alexander

    Looks and sounds Delicious!!!!!

  • Carl123ford

    Work?    Yes.     Nothing worthwhile is effortless!

  • Ingrid Schmidt

    Looks yummy, never tried it, and can’t wait to try it on our next visit. We love all the dishes at Maggiano’s a great place to get home made Italian food.

  • Debbie

    Amazing and who can do it better than MAGGIANOS!!!!!!

  • Debbie

    This looks and sounds amazing and who can do it better than MAGGIANOS!!!  YUM  <3

  • Suegawlik

    Chicken Braciole is the definite winner here!  When I make mine I have always used beef,  but what a great change AND noboby does it better than Maggiano’s!!!!

    Susan G

  • Suegawlik

    Chicken Braciole is the definite winner here!  When I make mine I have always used beef,  but what a great change AND noboby does it better than Maggiano’s!!!!

    Susan G

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/HWAECBAORKDRTNUYCUSLU5ACXM LINDA B

    This sounds and looks awesome. It on my “to try” list the next time I go to Maggiano’ss. My favorite Italian resturant.

  • Honeybee91

    Looks like “stick to your ribs” food…which is exactly what I go to Maggiano’s for…a memorable meal with staying-power, and a meal that will stay in my heart even longer.    I hope this one wins!

  • Karen M

    This looks fantastic and can’t wait to see it on the menu

  • Karen M

    This looks fantastic and can’t wait to see it on the menu

  • Tantegrazie

    Che Buono!
    Assolutamente delizioso!
    Io la faccio domani!

  • Tantegrazie

    Che Buono!
    Assolutamente delizioso!
    Io la faccio domani!

  • Tantegrazie

    Che Buono!
    Assolutamente delizioso!
    Io la faccio domani!

  • Rosie from Calabria

    This Braciole has the best of all Italian worlds.  Ricotta, Pancetta, filling…yummmmm.  It looks like it’s involved to make , so with it sounding so deliciouso…I hope to be able to try it out at Magianno’s one day.  I love to bite into something that has so many different flavors that go together.. Cant wait!

  • Knowlesn

    The Chicken Braciole gets my vote!  The recipe sounds awesome and very complex.  I would not try to do this myself but I would sure appreciate Maggiano’s capable chefs serving this wonderful cuisine to me.  I would certainly order and thanks for the opportunity to vote…

  • Anonymous

    Looking forward to trying this dish at Maggiano’s for it looks delizioso!

  • Anonymous

    Looking forward to trying this dish at Maggiano’s for it looks delizioso!

  • Herbmilliet

    This is something I would not even think about trying to do at home so I would love to see it on the menu.   Too much work for me.

  • Herbmilliet

    This is something I would not even think about trying to do at home so I would love to see it on the menu.   Too much work for me.

  • Bruce Henricks

    Looks Great !!!
      Hope it’s there   Feb. 14.

  • Mike Giammaria

    The Winnah!

  • Taximom

    Sounds like something my Grandmother from Italy would make. She used to make the meat Braciole, and it sounds like the chicken would be good also.

  • jibbster

    Looks great and sounds like something my mom used to make.

  • Sheila Dutile

    OMG!!  Sounds like Heaven to me!!!

  • Herbsophie

    Absolutely delicious..

  • Kristen Hoffman

    I always enjoy a cooking challenge and would make it at home for for part Sicilian boyfriend nd would love to see it on the maggiano’s menu.

  • Don’t use my name

    Sounds very tempting

  • http://www.facebook.com/shirley.fentz Shirley Fentz

    This would be a treat to have at Maggiano’s and something special to have out rather than making at home.  I love the combination of tomato sauce, and chicken braciole – we are used to having round steak so this sounds fresh and different. I think the trottole pasta is another special touch. 

  • Lucyrojas

    Delicious!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Tclassonmrb

    my mom made this dish with beef. I would love to try it with chicken at Maggiano. It gets my vote.

  • Spooky1945

    Chicken, ricotta…what more can you ask for???

  • Spooky1945

    Chicken, ricotta…what more can you ask for???

  • Ray Mortenson

    I would enjoy this dish very much and would love to make it also.

  • Ray Mortenson

    I would enjoy this dish very much and would love to make it also.

  • Lisa M

    This ome sounds awesome . I like the isead however it sounds cpmlicated. i will come order it.

  • Lisa M

    Sorry. My comment was full of typos. oops.

  • Ann Scandiffio

    Both my parents were born in Italy (actually, my mother in Vicari, Sicily).  I was making Braciole by the age of 7, it was my fathers speciality and he taught me.  I am still making it 60 years later.  This take off using chicken thighs sounds wonderful.  If Maggianos doesn’t put it on the menu, I guess I’ll have to make it at home!!

  • Bkwood

    Sounds fabulous !

  • Lhall

    Sounds delicious.  I hope it makes the menu

  • Hy Parnes

    Can’t wait to try it. Sounds fantastic.

  • http://twitter.com/Double_ARon Aaron Cohen

    This gets my vote!

  • Kpbear

    Sounds absolutely wonderful!!!  Would love to see it on the menu.

  • Depla3

    Sounds absolutely delicious.  My mother in law made braciole but nothing like this.  Would love to see it on the menu and if it is I sure will try it!!!

  • Arnold Kimmel

    When i was a child my mothre made this with white meat chicken breast and i remember how she sliced anfflattened the chiken  in order to stuff and  roll.
    It was an art.
    ARNIE  

  • Veena Kapur

    Sounds good, i will try next time

  • marie

    this sounds wonderful and you know the chicken will always bw tender, unlike beef at times.only thing i would change is leave out the oregano and sage which may make it bitter with all those strong herbs…

  • Samaljack

    Amazing dish- can’t wait!

  • Cfphyllis

    Sounds delicious , yes put it on the menu please

  • Lisa

    Put it on the menu. YUUUUMMMMY

  • mistoooo

    What a clever idea – I think that all good things (especially those that come from the kitchen) take some time and a lot of love.  This sounds fantastic (I like that they are sooo specific with the ingredients – the type of wine, medium sprigs of fresh oregano).  My dad is celebrating his 80th birthday in March (first time without our mom) and if we can’t all make it to Maggiano’s in Bridgwater, NJ I might try to make this for our family – all 20 of us!  I know he would love it – and my mom would have too.

  • Ro_estr

    It sounds great, I can’t wait to try it! I hope it’s on the menu

  • nancy

    Sounds great

  • Jraffaesq

    My Mother used to make this with veal.
    She would pound the veal chops until they were flat (paper thin).
    She would use toothpics instead of twine to hold the bracioles together. (The guests would remove the tooth pics as they ate the bracioles.)
    We used to move around alot; 60 years ago, Pancetta and Ricotta were not in all stores.
    She would use cottage cheese (I know sounds not too tasty – she would buy a sweet version – or add a little sugar to the cottage cheese to make it sweeter; with the proper spices and tomato sause, it really was quite delicious.. My Father had grocers in NYC ship to the store where we bought our
    food cases of Ricotta; he would buy them all and my Mother would make lazagna and cheese pastries so as not to have the Ricotta spoil. )
    Your receipe sounds delicious. When I was at your restaurant recently, they were served. Melted in my mouth.
    Best Regards.
    Jim Raffa

  • Phyllis Edwards

    I would definitely order this dish! 

  • Vicki799

    Sounds delicious! What a great combination

  • sally

    This sounds delicious. I can almost taste it while reading the recipe. I will definitely print the recipe and make it for friends. I would also order it at Maggiano’s.

  • Pook13g

    Sounds delicious!

  • Anonymous

    This gets my vote!

  • Nancy Rising

    Sign me up for this one!

  • Toporm

    Definitely would like to try it.

  • Cew

    Sounds delicious!!

  • Margie Coffey

    chicken Braciole sounds delicious.  I love steak braciole, I can wait to try this recipte.

  • Ablais1122

    I think I would appreciate this dish if added to the menu.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/6M6EYTAAGIERSXYHSK6XP4XRNQ malow

    I would love to see this on your menu!  I remember Maggiano’s serving the ‘beef’ version of this a couple of years ago and then it was removed from the menu and I was so sad to see it go.  So, it would be a real “treat” to be able to try this version with the chicken.  It sounds truly scrumptious!  I hope this is the ‘winner’.

  • Jinguagiato

    My mouth is watering just reading the recipe.  Hope to see this on Maggiano’s menu soon.  

  • Carole Busick

    I have been making braciole with beef my whole life and then here comes a really great idea. CHICKEN! This sounds terrific. It has my vote. I hope to see this on the menu soon.

  • Gmapoppy

    this dish sounds awesome, it gets my vote

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Betty-Warner/100002520964897 Betty Warner

    Beef Braciole for during the week?!

  • cas

    This gets my vote. I would definitely order this, it sounds delicious! 

  • Marcie

    I had a lot of traditional Braciole on Federal Hill in Providence Rhode Island when I was in college.It was great but this version sounds like a worthy update. Looking forward to seeing it on your menu.

  • Marcie

    I had a lot of traditional Braciole on Federal Hill in Providence Rhode Island when I was in college.It was great but this version sounds like a worthy update. Looking forward to seeing it on your menu.

  • Alexis

    I’d like to vote for the lowest fat content, but there is no way to find it out!

  • Janet

    You did a beef braciole for years and it was my very favorite.  Then it was gone, so sad…
    I think this one looks like great deal of work for me to do.  But may try it with my Chop Salad.

    Janet  Latenitereader

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