A Quick Glimpse at Our Lady of Lourdes
The feast of Our Lady of Lourdes is February 11th and one of the most widely known Marian Apparitions to Catholics all over the world. Our Lady appeared to a young girl named St. Bernadette numerous times beginning in 1858 in Southern France. Initially she was met with doubt by local officials who heard her story, but after returning to the grotto several times Our Lady revealed herself to the young girl and many villagers believed her.
On March 25th, the feast of the Annunciation, Our Lady revealed herself to Bernadette as the Immaculate Conception. A dogma of the Catholic faith that states, "from the first moment of her conception, by a singular grace and privilege of almighty God, and in view of the merits of Jesus Christ, Saviour of the human race, was preserved free from every stain of original sin is a doctrine revealed by God and, for this reason, must be firmly and constantly believed by all the faithful."
Commonly associated with Our Lady of Lourdes is the grotto which she asked St. Bernadette to drink from, water which we now know to be holy water which has healed and cured people of many ailments. You can read more about those miracles here.
About This Recipe
For this feast day we are making Chicken Cordon Bleu, which sounds much fancier than it actually is to make. This translates to "blue ribbon," which is perfectly fitting for the Marian Apparition where we see Our Lady wearing a wide blue ribbon tied around her waist.
Additionally, and not related to Our Lady but still interesting, according to Larousse Gastronomique, a French food encyclopedia, "the phrase dates back to medieval times when the most prestigious order a knight could earn was called the Cross of the Holy Spirit. The honor was signified by a medal that hung from a blue ribbon known as Le Cordon Bleu. Over time, the blue ribbon became a symbol of excellence. The term, meanwhile, became associated with food that meets the highest of standards or that is prepared by the most prestigious chefs."
There are a multitude of ways to craft this dinner, but this is how we do it in my home. Let's get dinner going!
Prep Time: 12 minutes
Bake Time: 30-35 minutes
Yields: 4 servings
4 boneless skinless chicken breast, thin sliced
4 pieces of prosciutto
10 slices of swiss cheese
3/4 cup bread crumbs
Non-stick cooking spray
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and spray a baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray.
Place the chicken breast on a cutting board and cover with plastic wrap or foil and pound down to about 1/4 inch thick. The chicken I purchased, thin sliced, was about this thick.
Salt and pepper on both sides.
To cover my pieces of chicken I needed two slices of Swiss cheese per piece, perhaps your chicken is a little wider and shorter, just use one piece then.
Next, lay the prosciutto across the Swiss cheese. You could also uses slices of ham from the deli, but I prefer prosciutto.
Roll the chicken up like a pinwheel, and place a toothpick in the side or the top to keep it secure while it's cooking.
Now we are going to dredge the chicken in egg and then breadcrumbs.
In one prep bowl, combine one egg and one tbsp water then whisk together.
In another bowl, pour in 3/4 cup breadcrumbs.
Note: For this part I did have to remove the toothpick momentarily as I placed the chicken roll in the egg, and then the breadcrumbs. Once I completed that process I put the toothpick back in.
Bake for 30 minutes then take the chicken out, place half of a Swiss cheese slice across the top, and put back in the oven for about 3 minutes. Check your chicken to make sure it has an internal temperature of 165 degrees.
Note: Instead of simply topping with Swiss cheese, you can serve this with a creamy wine sauce or a dijon cream sauce across the top.
Slice and serve hot, displaying the side of the pinwheel.
Our Lady of Lourdes Prayer for Healing
O ever-Immaculate Virgin, Mother of Mercy,
health of the sick, refuge of sinners,
comforter of the afflicted,
you know my wants, my troubles, my sufferings;
look with mercy on me.
By appearing in the Grotto of Lourdes,
you were pleased to make it a privileged sanctuary,
whence you dispense your favours;
and already many sufferers have obtained
the cure of their infirmities, both spiritual and corporal.
I come, therefore, with complete confidence
to implore your maternal intercession.
Obtain, O loving Mother, the grant of my requests.
(mention your petition)
Through gratitude for your favours,
I will endeavour to imitate your virtues,
that I may one day share your glory.