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Bacon-wrapped Muscovy Hen Breasts Stuffed with Apples and Chestnuts


4 Tbs unsalted butter, melted
? c water
1 Tbs sugar

2 Honey Crisp apples, peeled, cored and cut lengthwise into 8 wedges per apple
12-16 peeled whole chestnuts, fresh or frozen
2 Tsp fresh thyme leaves
4 boneless, skinless Muscovy hen breast halves (about 7 oz ea), butterflied
24 thin slices bacon
? c grape seed or olive oil



For the apples: Heat oven to 350

Combine the butter, water, sugar and salt in a bowl. Add the apples and toss to coat. Spread the apples out on a rimmed baking sheet and roast, stirring frequently, for 20 minutes. Add the chestnuts and roast for 10 minutes or more, or until the apples and chestnuts begin to brown and the butter and water have been absorbed. Remove from the oven, toss with the thyme, and set aside to cool. This can be made the day before serving.

For the Muscovy hen breast: To butterfly the breasts, first remove the skin, with a sharp knife parallel to the cutting board, make a horizontal cut along the rounded thinner side of the breast. Spread the breast open so it forms a heart shape. Working 1 breast at a time, spread butterflied breast, skin side down on a work surface.

Place 4 apple wedges down along the center and fill in between with the chestnuts, using about 4 per breast. Fold the breast meat over onto itself to form a roll. Place 4 lengthwise slices of bacon, overlapping on the work surface and place 2 slices perpendicular to the other so they overlap by 1 inch to form a cross. Place a duck breast in the center, parallel to the 2 bacon slices, fold the bacon over the breast and then roll it up to make a neat package. Repeat with the remaining breasts and bacon. Once wrapped with the bacon the breast can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 8 hours, but any longer and the bacon will begin to cure and discolor the meat.

To cook: Heat oven to 375

Heat the oil over medium heat in a large ovenproof saut? pan. Carefully place the bacon-wrapped Muscovy hen breasts in the pan and cook on all sides for about 6 minutes to render and brown the bacon. Drain off most of the fat from the pan and put into the oven to finish cooking, about 15 minutes for medium-rare. Remove the pan from the oven and let the Muscovy hen breasts rest for 5-8 minutes.

To serve: Trim off about ? inch from the ends of each Muscovy hen breast, and then cut each breast crosswise in half.


Serves 4


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