Cheesy Chicken Bread Loaves
Posted on September 14, 2012 by Jennifer
Healthy, tasty and kinda cool, these loaves are great hot, warm or cold (in a picnic basket); pleasing kids and adults. This makes 2 loaves, but could easily be halved.
2 loaves unsliced, bakery bread
1 large shallot, quartered
2 fat garlic cloves, quartered
4 oz country ham or prosciutto, roughly chopped
1/2 package frozen chopped spinach, thawed squeezed dry
2 pounds ground chicken breast
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 cup breadcrumbs (made from loaf bread at the top of this recipe)
1/2 teaspoon sea or kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
2 large eggs
2 cups shredded Gruyere cheese (or sharp cheese of choice)
1) Preheat oven to 375º, if baking immediately. This recipe can be made up to point of baking, 3 hours in advance and held in the fridge. Cut off one end of each bread loaf (save the end bit) and scoop out the bread inside, using tongs to reach in deep. Break the retrieved, soft bread into bits and bake until toasted. You will have more than needed, which can be frozen.
2) While breadcrumbs are toasting, make the filling: With the motor running, pop the shallot and garlic into a food processor. Then add the ham and spinach and process until well minced. Stop the machine and add in the chicken, Dijon, breadcrumbs, salt and thyme and pulse until just combined then, add in the eggs and pulse just to incorporate. If you do not have a food processor, just minced and mix everything well, suckah.
3) Spoon the chicken mixture into the hollowed out bread loaves, stick the ends back on and wrap well with aluminum foil. Bake on a baking tray for 45 minutes, then remove from oven, open the foil and pile 1 cup of cheese on each loaf. Place back in the oven and bake until melted and golden in spots. Allow the loaves to rest for 10 minutes before slicing.
Each loaf makes 4 main course servings