Ballotine in French means bundle, and that’s what ballotine is – a bundle of meat. The meat you cooking with must be boneless and flattened. Traditionally chicken thighs, are the main ingredient of this meal. Chicken thigs needs to be boned, skinless, and pounded to flatten them. A prepared piece of meat lay out flat, then put stuffing on edge of meat, roll up meat like a roulade and tie with kitchen string, then cook in the oven in the roasting tin, filled with stock.
The stuffing for ballotine can be anything, including other meat. Literature & Lore “The pièce de résistance of our meal would be a ballotine of veal: veal that has been stuffed and rolled into the shape of a log and served hot with a luscious sauce…. we prepared an elaborate veal forcemeat that included quite a generous bit of foie gras, mushroom duxelles, Cognac, Madeira, and blanched chard leaves which would be used to make a nice pattern. We then stuffed the veal with the forcemeat, tied it up ever so neatly in its clean poaching cloth…. The ballotine, poached in the spectacular veal stock and then allowed to linger in it a while to enhance the flavour, was an immense success with its truffled sauce.” — Julia Child with Alex Prudhomme. My Life in France. New York: Alfred A. Knopf. 2006. Page 91-92.