Lukes stuffed chicken

Filled with sweet dried fruit and chestnuts, this rolled roast chicken recipe from Aaron Craze does double duty as an antipasto nibble or dinner party main course
By Aaron Craze
Lukes stuffed chicken
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 12-16
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes plus 30 mins soaking
  • Effort: easy


  • 50 g dried apricots
  • 100 ml vin santo
  • 30 g cooked chestnuts
  • ½ bunches tarragon, chopped, plus 1 sprig, leaves picked
  • 1 large chicken, deboned
  • 6 slices speck ham
  • olive oil, for drizzling
  • mustard cress, to garnish

Tips and Suggestions

Ask a specialist butcher to debone the chicken for you. Outside peak shopping times, they are usually happy to do this.
You can also serve the roast chicken roll with vegetables for a family supper or dinner party.


1. Place the dried apricots into a bowl, add the vin santo and soak for 30 minutes, or overnight if you have the time.

2. Blitz the apricots, chestnuts and tarragon in a food processor until coarse, then season well and set aside.

3. Spread the deboned chicken out flat, skin-side down, then cut in half down the line between both breasts. Rub some olive oil into the flesh side of both pieces then sprinkle with salt, pepper and the tarragon leaves.

4. Take one piece of chicken and lay half the speck across the inside, overlapping the fatty strip of the ham, which will help it stick together. Shape half the stuffing into a log and sit on top of the ham.

5. Roll the chicken up to enclose the filling and make a sausage shape, then tie the length of the chicken roll with string to secure. Repeat with the other piece of chicken and place them both in the fridge for 1 hour to set before cooking.

6. Preheat the oven to 180C/gas 4. Place a medium non-stick frying pan over a medium-high heat. Rub the chicken with olive oil and, once the pan is hot, seal the chicken for a few minutes, turning until it is golden brown on all sides. Transfer the chicken to a roasting tin and roast for 30 minutes, or until cooked through and firm to the touch.

7. Allow the chicken to rest for 10 minutes, then roll tightly in cling film and leave to cool completely.

8. To serve, slice the chicken into discs and lay on a serving dish. Drizzle with olive oil and scatter over some mustard cress to garnish.

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