Sometimes we enjoy spending hours cooking an extra special meal, but usually we need a quick and delicious suppertime solution. That’s where the pan technique comes in handy. Follow along for a delicious recipe for Chicken Marsala
Chicken Marsala is fabulous one pan dish. Pictured above: Chicken Marsala from our Deli
The technique is brilliantly simple! Start by browning meats in a pan, remove and reserve, and then sauté vegetables to build a second level of flavor. Next we add liquids like wine to deglaze and release those flavors from the pan to create a sauce.
What’s REALLY Happening?
It all sounds pretty simple, but there is a lot of intricate chemistry going on here. Browning meats creates complex new chemical compounds, browning vegetables creates even more, and the combination continues to create more and more new flavors, add in the wine and the changes continue and flavors become even more complex. Then herbs, spices and a myriad of other ingredients can be added to fine-tune all this flavor into a stunning dish that has exponentially more flavor than the ingredients do alone.
Curry is an great example of the one pan method, as are stir-fries, soups, fricassee, stews, cacciatore and more!
Cooks have learned this through trial and error over the years, but recently scientists are working more closely with chefs to better understand just what happens in the kitchen – and with more understanding comes better dishes. Curious chefs and food geeks like me study this to bring you better foods, but all you need to know is that you can build lots of flavors in a single pan with the right ingredients and technique.
Stews are the epitome of a one pan dish, browned and slow braised.
Examples of one-pan meals include stew, curry, stir-fry, chili, soups, stroganoff, cacciatore, fricassee, most sauced pastas and just about any meat, fowl or fish dish served in a sauce. A delicious yet easy example follows. Buon Appetito – Salute!
Chef Mick Rosacci, www.TonysMarket.com
So delicious, so elegant, and so darn easy to prepare! This simple recipe will be a hit, and this
cooking technique will be a nice addition to your repertoire.
4 boneless skinless chicken breast halves
Sea salt, black pepper, flour
2 TBS canola oil
2 TBS butter
¼ cup minced onion
8 oz. sliced mushrooms; crimini, shiitake or white
1/2-cup Marsala wine (drinking quality)
3/4-cup premium low-sodium chicken stock (More Than Gourmet
Chopped fresh chives, or parsley garnish (optional)
Preheat a large, heavy pan over medium high heat (to about 400°). Season chicken with salt and pepper, dredge well in flour (omit for GF, see notes below). Add oil and pan fry chicken quickly to brown but not cook through, about 3 minutes per side.
In the same pan, add butter and sauté the onions and mushrooms until soft and lightly browned, stirring frequently.
Add wine and when reduced by half, add chicken stock and cook for a couple minutes. Reduce heat to medium and add back chicken breasts, cooking until the sauce thickens and the breasts are just done, about 5 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed, and if you want it extra rich, add a couple more TBS of butter.
Serve over buttered pasta, rice or couscous with salad or steamed veggies, garnished with fresh chopped chives. Serves 4
Gluten Free Option: Omit flour and thicken at the end by tempering in cornstarch or arrowroot.
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