Seasonal Flavors: Home Town Flavors


By Denise Zito

Crozet and its environs abound in local food and the Crozet Gazette has featured many of the purveyors. We are fortunate indeed to live amidst farms, orchards, vineyards and spectacular restaurants that produce an abundance of healthy food, lovingly grown and beautifully sold at local farmers markets and shops and in many cases, straight from the source. This month’s recipe features three ingredients that are produced right here in our community: chicken from the Free Union Grass Farm (full disclosure: my son Joel Zito Slezak and his partner Erica Hellen are the owners), gouda cheese from Our Lady of the Angels Monastery in Crozet and bacon from Double H Farm in nearby Nelson County. The Free Union Grass Farm and the Monastery have both been profiled in these pages. Note to the editor: suggest you get in touch with Double H!

Monastery cheese makes a great gift, and when I sent a wheel to my friend Paula at Christmas, she returned the favor with this recipe, which she claims received the ‘husband seal of approval.’

Picture yourself on your back porch with a glass of White Hall Vineyards Chardonnay, a salad from your own garden greens, and the entreé below.

Chicken Breasts with Gouda Cheese and Bacon

  • Two chicken breasts from 
  • Free Union Grass Farm
  • 8 oz. gouda cheese from Our Lady 
  • of the Angels Monastery
  • 4 strips of bacon from 
  • Double H Farm
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • ¼ cup wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp dried or 2 T fresh basil
  • ¼ tsp salt

Prepare a marinade by mixing the oil, vinegar, basil and salt.

Cut the chicken breasts into longitudinal slices, about half an inch thick. Place in a ziplock bag with the marinade for a minimum of three hours or up to 24 hours in the refrigerator.

Lay the bacon on a plate, place a chicken slice and then a 2 oz. slice of cheese on top of the bacon. Roll together and secure with a toothpick. Bake at 350° F for 30 minutes or more depending on the thickness of the chicken breast.


• Chicken from the Free Union Grass Farm Sold at the Crozet Great Valu, the Charlottesville City Market or directly from the farm shop by placing a request through their website.

• Gouda from Our Lady of the Angels Monastery Sold at Feast in Charlottesville, by mail order or directly from the monastery at designated hours. Call ahead: 434-823-1452

• Bacon from Double H Farm in Nelson County. Email: [email protected] Sold by appointment. 434-263-8704