8/10/2005

SMOKED-CHEDDAR-STUFFED CHICKEN WITH GREEN APPLE SLAW

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classic apple and cheese combo gets a fun twist in this delicious dish. What to drink: Taz 2003 Chardonnay, Santa Barbara ($20).

Chicken
1/2 cup coarsely grated smoked cheddar cheese
1 tablespoon plus 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
1 tablespoon cream cheese, room temperature
2 teaspoons chopped fresh sage
4 boneless chicken breast halves with skin and tenderloin attached
1/4 cup Scotch whisky
2 tablespoons (packed) golden brown sugar
2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) unsalted butter
Green Apple Slaw
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
1 tablespoon Scotch whisky
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh sage
1 very large Granny Smith apple, halved, cored, cut into matchstick-size strips (about 2 1/2 cups)
1/4 cup paper-thin slices red onion
2 green onions, chopped
Nonstick vegetable oil spray

For chicken:
Stir cheddar cheese, 1 tablespoon maple syrup, cream cheese, and sage in small bowl to blend. Place 1 chicken breast, skin side down, on work surface. Using small sharp knife, cut 1 1/2-inch-deep by 2-inch-long horizontal pocket in chicken. Pack in 1/4 of stuffing. Press tenderloin into pocket opening to seal in stuffing. Repeat with remaining chicken and stuffing. Arrange chicken on small baking sheet. Combine 1/4 cup maple syrup, whisky, brown sugar, and butter in small saucepan. Whisk over medium heat until sauce comes to simmer and is blended. (Chicken and basting sauce can be made 1 day ahead. Cover separately and refrigerate.)
For green apple slaw:
Whisk first 5 ingredients in medium bowl to blend. Mix in apple, red onion, and green onions. Season slaw to taste with salt and pepper. Refrigerate at least 1 hour and up to 4 hours, tossing occasionally.

Spray grill rack with nonstick spray and prepare barbecue (medium-high heat). Rewarm basting sauce; transfer half to bowl and reserve. Set pan with remaining sauce at edge of grill to keep warm. Grill chicken, skin side down, until golden, about 3 minutes. Turn chicken over, repositioning over medium to medium-low heat. Grill until cooked through, turning occasionally and basting with sauce in pan during last 5 minutes, about 8 minutes. Transfer chicken to platter. Serve with apple slaw, passing reserved sauce separately.

Makes 4 servings.
Bon App├ętit
July 2005

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