Chicken Breasts in Pancetta with Garlic Cream

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The New Rayburn Cookbook by Richard Maggs and Dawn Roads serves up a host of wonderful Rayburn recipes. The pancetta here keeps the chicken moist and succulent

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Serves 6

  • 6 boned free-range chicken breasts
  • 140g (5 oz) garlic cream cheese, e.g. Boursin
  • salt and white pepper
  • 12 slices pancetta
  • a little soft butter
  • 300ml (10fl oz) dry white wine
  • 1 tsp cornflour
  • 200ml (7 fl oz) full-fat créme fraîche
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley or coriander

Remove the skin from each of the chicken breasts. Using a sharp knife, cut a pocket lengthways across each breast and spread half the garlic cream cheese in the centre of each. Season very lightly with salt and more generously with white pepper. Wrap each breast neatly in two slices of pancetta.

Lightly butter the base of a baking dish and arrange the assembled chicken breasts inside. Main Oven 200°C (400°F), Gas Mark 6. Slide the baking dish on a grid shelf on the second set of runners at the top of the Main Oven. Bake for 12-15 minutes, depending in size, until starting to colour (if browning too quickly, transfer to the floor of the oven towards the end of this period).Once browned and cooked through, transfer to a warmed serving dish and keep hot in the Lower Oven.


To make the sauce:

Add the wine to the baking dish and return to the oven for five minutes to dissolve the cooking juices. Pour into a small saucepan and add the rest of the cheese. Mix the cornflour in a cup with a little cold water and whisk into the sauce, heat gently on the simmering end of the hotplate.

Stir in the créme fraîche, taste and adjust the seasoning. Just before serving stir in the chopped fresh herbs. Serve each portion with a little of the sauce to coat. Serve the rest to hand.

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