Tuscan rolled chicken

Recipe: Tuscan Rolled Chicken


  • 1.6kg free-range chicken, boned and butterflied (ask your butcher to do this)
  • 2 x 170g chicken breast fillets
  • 4 slices pancetta, taken from a flat piece
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 4 thyme sprigs
  • 1 cup (250ml) dry white wine
Rocket pesto
  • 2 bunches rocket, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 cup (80g) toasted pine nuts
  • 2 cups (160g) freshly grated parmesan
  • 200ml olive oil, plus extra to brush


  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C or a woodfired oven to 400°C. For the pesto, place rocket, garlic, pine nuts and cheese in a food processor and pulse to combine.
  2. With the motor running, slowly add oil through the feed tube until you have a thick paste.
  3. Season with salt. Lay the chicken on a flat surface, skin-side down, then spread with half the pesto. Wrap the extra fillets in the pancetta, then place on chicken beside the breasts and spread with remaining pesto.
  4. Roll up the chicken tightly to enclose in the skin and secure with kitchen string at 5cm intervals. Place chicken in a baking dish or terrine (it’s important that it’s a snug fit).
  5. Add the garlic and thyme, then pour over the wine. Brush chicken with oil, then cover with foil and place in the oven (or at the front of the woodfired oven away from central heat) for 45 minutes.
  6. Remove foil, then roast for a further 30 minutes (10-15 minutes in a woodfired oven), basting occasionally, until cooked through.
  7. Cool the chicken in the dish for at least 30 minutes, then remove the string, slice thickly and serve.

Number of servings (yield): 4

Meal type: breakfast

Culinary tradition: USA (General)

My rating: 5 stars:  ★★★★★ 1 review(s)