I have recently enjoyed taking recipes we’ve learned at culinary school and making them my own at home. Last week, we made something called La Roulade de Poitrine de Poulet Farci a la Mousse de Vollaile Jus Lie. In English, this is essentially a chicken breast rolled tight with a filling of roasted peppers, sauteed spinach, sauteed chopped mushrooms (known in French as Mushroom Duxelle) and chicken mousse.
Chicken mousse is made by running breast or leg meat through a food processor until they look something like cotton candy. Don’t eat it! Afterwards, the chicken is seasoned and combined with heavy cream until it reaches a light, fluffy consistency. Usually, the chicken and mousse mixture is poached because it is rather delicate in this form. Alone, chicken mousse looks like an alien substance from Mars. However, when it is paired with various ingredients, it can provide an interesting texture to a dish.
The chicken roll-up, the dish we made in culinary school, was delicious. I loved the combination of flavors of the fillings inside the chicken – this is what really added flavor. Paired together, these three distinctive flavors \ the mushrooms, the peppers and the spinach – caught my attention. Suddenly, in a stroke of brilliance (at least I thought it was brilliance), I had an idea.
Later, at home, I used these three flavors plus some chicken sausage (it was on sale at the grocery store) to make a pizza. I had to make this as soon as possible. Here is what I did (I used pita bread because it was what I had on hand):
- Whole pita bread
- Tomato sauce
- Mozzarella cheese or goat cheese (or both!)
- Mushroom Duxelle
- Roasted peppers
- Sauteed spinach
- Protein, either roasted chicken leg or pork/chicken sausage
- Finely chop mushrooms.
- Sweat shallots with salt and butter over low heat. When softened, add mushrooms and saute until cooked.
- Add lemon juice and stir to finish.
- Set oven to 400-450 degrees.
- Place pepper in oven whole and roast until softened.
- Peel off the skin and slice into thin strips.
- Saute spinach leaves in butter (medium-high heat). Add a few garlic cloves or chopped shallots, if desired.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Spread tomato sauce over top of pita bread (not too much).
- Sprinkle a light layer of mozzarella or goat cheese on top of the sauce.
- Place the toppings on the pizza. Start with the mushroom duxelle and protein chopped small, and top with bunches of sauteed spinach. Lie roasted pepper strips neatly on top of the pizza.
- Bake at 400 degrees or higher until cheese has melted and pita bread is crispy.
- Let cool a little, then eat!