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Playing Ba-Da-Bing Italian Chicken Cigars


  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • 1 small Spanish onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, grated or finely chopped
  • 1 pound ground chicken breast
  • 1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/2 cup (about 10 leaves) fresh basil, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon ground fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoon red chili flakes
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup (half a stick) butter, melted
  • 4 sheets phyllo dough


Serves: 6 cigars




Preheat oven to 425F.



Heat a medium-size skillet over medium-high heat with 2 turns of the pan of EVOO, about 2 tablespoons. Once hot, add the onions and garlic, and cook until soft, about 6-7 minutes. Remove the pan from heat, spoon contents into a medium-size mixing bowl and let cool. Once the onions and garlic are cool enough to handle, add the chicken to the bowl with the sun-dried tomatoes, basil, oregano, fennel, chili flakes, cheese, salt and freshly ground black pepper. Mix to combine.



Place a piece of phyllo on a nonstick cookie sheet and brush with the melted butter. Top with a second sheet of phyllo and brush with butter again. Divide the chicken mixture in half and form a one-inch thick log the length of the long side of the phyllo dough. Roll the chicken log up in the phyllo tightly.



Cut the chicken-filled phyllo into 3 "cigars" and brush with a more butter.



Repeat with the remaining 2 sheets of phyllo and the rest of the chicken mixture to make a total of two chicken and phyllo roll-ups (6 "cigars"). Bake for about 12-15 minutes until golden brown.