Ham, Swiss Cheese and Basil Stuffed Chicken Legs

6 chicken legs, whole
4 ounces Swiss cheese (divided into 6 servings)
6 slices ham (I used rosemary ham tonight)
2 ounces fresh basil leaves (about 4-6 leaves per serving)
1/4 cup Panko bread crumbs
pinch or freshly ground pepper
pinch of salt
6 sheets of aluminum foil - 12"x12"

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

Debone chicken pieces by placing chicken skin side down and running a knife along the hip piece by placing the knife under bones and working towards the thigh joint.

Once the meat is free from the bones grab the hip and break at the joint then pull apart. The bones will come clean leaving the skin behind.

Once the hip plate has been removed place chicken skin side down and run the knife along the leg and thigh bones.

Work meat away from the bone being careful not to cut the skin. Once the thigh bone is free use the knife to scrape at the bone to free the meat and work towards the leg bone.

When complete the thigh and leg bone should be removed and you will end up with a nice piece chicken with the skin attached.

Trim excess skin and fat from the fillet and place in refrigerator for ½ hour to chill.

Place chicken skin side down, grind pepper and sprinkle salt on the meat.

Place cheese onto the widest part of the chicken.

Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of Panko crumbs on the cheese.

Place ham and then the basil leaves over the cheese.

Roll up chicken, folding skin over the ends to end up with a uniform roll and the stuffing is sealed in the roll.

Place the stuffed chicken on a sheet of aluminium foil and roll up the foil making sure it is sealed all around the chicken.

Place chicken on a baking tray and bake for 25 - 30 minutes (internal temperature 160 F, will rise 10 degrees when removed from oven to rest unless your kitchen is in an igloo).

Remove from oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes. Remove chicken from foil and place onto baking sheet and return to oven on broil setting for 6 -10 minutes or until skin is crispy and golden brown. 

Remove from heat and be prepared to have an out of body experience when you taste this. Almost better than sex.

Serve the chicken with whatever side dishes you like. I served it with crispy bacon and onion fried potatoes and spaghetti squash cooked with onions and apple. The killer part of it was using the bone to make a stock then reducing it with shallots, red wine and tomato paste to make a rich and savoury sauce that elevated the chicken to a heaven sent offering (recipe will be posted with the spaghetti squash recipe. Simply drizzled over the chicken when plated made this very, very special. Just a normal Monday after work dinner...