Tuesday, April 12, 2011

RECIPE - Roulade of Chicken with Orange Juice (Rolê de Frango com Suco de Laranja)

Most of Brazil's annual production of oranges is exported (click here to read more), and most of what remains in Brazil is eaten fresh or drunk as fresh-squeezed orange juice. However, oranges and orange juice have found a place in Brazilian gastronomy and are used as an ingredient in prepared recipes and dishes. Naturally, many of these dishes are desserts, pastries, cakes and sweets, but orange juice is sometimes called for in savory dishes as well.

This recipe is an example of such savory dishes - a main-course preparation of small rolls formed from boneless, skinless chicken breasts cooked in a sauce of concentrated (but not FOJC) orange juice. This recipe calls for concentrated fresh-squeezed orange juice, which sounds like a contradiction but which is not. To concentrate the juice required for this dish, squeeze enough orange juice to make one cup. Then boil it rapidly until it is concentrated by half - until you have a half-cup remaining.
RECIPE - Roulade of Chicken with Orange Juice (Rolê de Frango com Suco de Laranja)
Serves 6

3 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
1/2 pound sliced mozzarella cheese
2 large, ripe tomato - peeled, seeded and cut into thin strips about 1 inch (2 cm) long
1 clove garlic, peeled
1 small onion, peeled and halved
1 cup fresh-squeezed orange juice
salt and pepper to taste
kitchen twine
Preheat oven to 350F (180C).

Prepare the orange juice. Put the juice plus the garlic and onion in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat and continue to boil until the juice is reduced to 1/2 cup. Remove from the heat, discard the garlic and onion, and reserve.

Prepare the chichen. Place each breast half between two pieces of wax paper and with a mallet or the bottom of a wine bottle lightly pound them to reduce their thickness. Remove from the wax paper, and using a sharp long knife, cut each piece in half again, horizontally. Reserve.

Lay out each piece of chicken, season it with salt and pepper, then cover it with a slice of cheese, trimming the cheese to fit the chicken. Top with two or more strips of tomato. Roll the chicken along the narrow axis to create a tight roll, then tie with kitchen twine to retain its shape during cooking.

Place the rolls in a small casserole or gratin dish, just large enough to hold them. Drizzle the concentrated juice over and place in preheated oven. Cook for about 45 minutes or until the rolls are fully-cooked and browned on top. During the cooking time, you can use a turkey baster to pour some of the pan juices over the rolls if you wish a richer color.

Serve immediately with white rice and a green salad.

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