Friday, November 16, 2018

Chicken Marsala

We recently did a dinner at our church and the entrée was Chicken Marsala.

This is a dish prepared with Marsala wine. 

And lots of mushrooms!  If you do not care for mushrooms, this is not the dish for you.

Most recipes will call for dry Marsala but a very few will call for sweet Marsala.

There is the slightest difference in taste between the two wines.   However, there is much more
sugar in the sweet and that can ultimately alter the dish.


6 chicken breasts, pounded to an even thickness, to cook evenly
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup all purpose flour OR 1/2 cup fine bread crumbs
 2 T. olive oil, or more as needed
1 knob butter, unsalted
10 oz. cremini mushrooms (or baby bellas)
1 knob butter, unsalted
2 shallots, finely chopped
1 large garlic clove, minced
1 cup Marsala wine (dry)
1/2 cup chicken stock
1/2 lemon, juiced
1/2 c. finely minced fresh parsley

The classic preparation is to pound the chicken breasts to an even  thickness and then salt and
pepper the breast.  The breasts are then lightly dredged in flour (or fine bread  crumbs)  and sautéed in a pan with olive oil and a knob of butter.  The breasts should be lightly browned, just a few minutes on each side - 4-5. 

Remove the breasts and set aside to keep lightly warmed.  To the pan, add the sliced mushrooms
and saute til nice and browned.  Add butter, if needed.  You don't want too much fat since you want
to really brown the mushrooms to bring out their earthiness.  Then add the shallots and garlic. Saute for just a minute or two.    Add the Marsala wine, scraping the pan of its fond and let it reduce by about half.  Add the chicken stock and bring to a boil.
Add a knob of butter to finish the sauce.  Add the chicken breasts and coat with the sauce.

Lemon is the unami for many foods.  After this dish is completed, a light sprinkle of fresh lemon
juice is just the right touch, to bring all the flavors to their complete perfection.

This is a lovely dish served with peppardalle or orzo.

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