Sometimes I cook fancy! Sauteed chicken with wine and herbs

Aka. Poulet Saute Beausejor with Nouilles Fines au Beurre

Recipe and reaction under the cut.

Recipe taken from 60-Minute Gourmet by Pierre Franey.

1lbs boneless chicken breast
Salt and pepper to taste
3tbl butter divided
2 cloves garlic pressed
2 small bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/3 cup dry white wine
1/3 cup water

-Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper to taste
-Heat 2 tbl butter in skillen and add all chicken pieces. Cook 5-7 minutes and turn. Add garlic, bay leaves and thyme
-Cook over moderate heat, turning so meat cooks evenly until total cooking time is around 20 minutes
-Remove chicken and cover to keep warm. Add wine to skillet and cook over high heat until wine is reduced in half
-Add water and boil briskly for 30 seconds
-Swirl in remaining butter salt and pepper
-Pour over chicken

Buttered Noodles:
1/2 lbs thin noodles
2 tbl butter at room temp
pepper to taste

-I shouldn’t have to tell you how to make noodles and add butter
-Serve chicken over noodles with side salad

With fresh names for every dish and recipes involving Cornish game hen, calf liver, and chicken gizzards, this cook book feels like it is on an entirely different tier of food from where I’ve been operating. Really though, what’s impressive about this book is that once you understand some of the more advanced concepts in cuisine (trussing a chicken for instance) it’s a lot simpler than it initially looks. Cooking this meal was fairly simple and did in fact take about the 60 minutes promised by the title.  The recipe did call for a full chicken, liver and skin included, but I wasn’t quite ready for that, and I don’t know that any of my friends were looking to eat liver any time soon.

I will be honest and say that I did overcook both the chicken and the noodles just a little bit. It wasn’t anything too noticeable, but the chicken was a bit dryer and tougher than I think it was meant to be and the noodles could have been a bit more tender. In the future I think I side on the cautious with the cooking times and use angel hair pasta rather than thin spaghetti noodles.  Despite the overcooked food everything turned out to be pretty delicious.  The sauce was sweet but didn’t drown out the natural flavor of the meat or the tang of the herbs.  The buttered noodles were a nice compliment, a soft flavor and texture that helped to compliment the dish.  The dish called for more butter than I’m really used to using, but it didn’t end up being nearly as rich as I expected.

In all I was pleasantly surprised both at how simple this was to prepare and how well my first attempt at gourmet cooking turned out.  I’ve learned a bit about what to do next time, and I made a tasty meal that could be delicious with a bit more practice.


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