Thursday, September 9, 2010

Pesto Cheese 'n Chicken Bundles

When I saw this recipe on Pillsbury's site, I knew I was going to like it. However, I hesitated to make it because of the jalapeno element. What to do? Omit it. Problem solved. With familiar flavors, this is yummy and easy meal; courtesy of Pillsbury.

Pesto Cheese 'n Chicken Bundles

1 - 8 oz. can Pillsbury Refrigerated Crescent Dinner Rolls
1/3 cup light cream cheese with roasted garlic
1/4 purchased pesto
1 Tb. jalapeno or hot pepper jelly
1/2 cup bread crumbs
2 cups cubed cooked chicken
3 Tb. crumbled feta cheese
1 Tb. water or as needed

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Separate dough into 4 rectangles. Firmly press perforations to seal. Cut each rectangle in half crosswise to make 8 pieces; press each to form 4" square.

In medium bowl, combine cream cheese, pesto, jelly and 2 Tb. of the bread crumbs; mix well. Stir in chicken and cheese.

Place 1/4 cup chicken mixture in center of each square. Bring 4 corners of each square up over filling; twist firmly to seal. Brush top and bottom of each bundle with water; coat with remaining bread crumbs. Place on ungreased cookie sheet.

Bake at 375 degrees for 14 to 22 minutes or until deep golden brown. Serve warm.

Don't these look yummy?

While I'm sure the jalapeno would've added a nice kick to this dish, I was very happy that I omitted it. You just can't go wrong with pesto, feta, cream cheese and chicken. While the presentation may look involved, don't be intimidated. This is actually a pretty easy dish to make.

I had some frozen chicken breasts that I thawed, seasoned with salt and pepper and popped in the oven at 450 degrees for about 15 minutes or so. Then I just chopped them up. If you have a rotisserie chicken, you could use that or any other cooked chicken. The chicken mixture you can definitely make ahead. Softening the cream cheese will allow you to incorporate the filling easily.
Do not soften the crescent rolls. They will get stickier and a little harder to work with and to press out into a larger square.

These little chicken bundles were very yummy. I might have added a smidge more pesto for a more prominent flavor. But Wes thought it was fine the way it was. Now, these bundles aren't very big. So definitely plan for two or three chicken bundles per person. Love the sweetness and buttery flavor of the crescent rolls against the creaminess of the chicken filling.

You can definitely tweak this dish to your liking. You could probably even use the bleu cheese and pesto mixture in this chicken dish to give a different flavor. Or you could sprinkle some Parmesan cheese on top of the bundles as well. Lots of things you can do. But something easy and looks impressive. Hope you'll give it a try.

Happy cooking!

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