The Literate Chef

Posts Tagged ‘fond’

Pollo al Marsala con Funghi (Chicken Marsala with Mushrooms)

In Chicken, Recipes on July 26, 2015 at 2:50 PM

Chicken Marsala with Mushrooms

Chicken Marsala with Mushrooms (Pollo al Marsala con Funghi)

(Preparation time, 40 minutes; Serves 4)

Ingredients:

1 lb. mushrooms, sliced
1.5 lbs. skinless, boneless, chicken breasts
1/4 lb. unsalted butter
2 eggs, beaten & seasoned with salt & pepper
1 cup flour, seasoned with salt & pepper
Fresh sage, about 8 large leaves, chopped coarse
1 + 1/4 cup Sweet Marsala

Procedure:

1. Heat a large (12″ or more) non-stick skillet on medium-high.
2. Add 2 tbsp. of butter. When bubbling, add mushrooms and sauté until golden brown. Remove and set aside.
3. Pat dry the chicken breasts with paper towels, dip them in the seasoned egg and then in the seasoned flour and set aside until all pieces are floured.
4. Melt the remaining butter in the pan on medium heat.
5. When bubbling, add the floured chicken breasts and lightly brown for 5 minutes on each side.
6. Add the chopped sage and sautéed mushrooms and mix well. Add 1 cup of Marsala, reduce heat to low, cover and cook for 10 minutes, turning once after 5 minutes.
7. Turn heat to medium high, remove the cover and cook for 5 minutes more.
8. Check the chicken for doneness, remove all to a serving plate and keep warm.
9. Deglaze the skillet with the remaining 1/4 cup of Marsala, scraping up any fond and pour the sauce over the chicken.

Serve with a well-chilled bottle of Italian white wine, such as an Arneis.

Rigatoni all’ Amatriciana

In Pasta, Recipes on November 9, 2014 at 5:36 PM

The sauce for this pasta dish originated in the town of Amatrice, which is in the Lazio Region of Italy, northeast of Rome. Many recipes call for the use of guanciale, which is not always readily available, so if I am unable to get it, I use pancetta, which is perfectly acceptable. One could also use prosciutto, as well. However, if you can obtain guanciale, I would recommend trying it, as it has a slightly different pork flavor and texture. The classic pasta shape used with an Amatriciana sauce is bucatini; however, because of its thickness, it can be somewhat difficult to wrap around your fork. I find that rigatoni works well as the sauce and the pancetta work their way into the pasta tube, giving you more flavor in each mouthful. But, once again try the bucatini yourself for a different eating experience.

Rigatoni all' Amatriciana

Rigatoni all’ Amatriciana

 Active Preparation Time 45 minutes; Serves 4

Ingredients:

4 Tbsp. olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 lb. pancetta, diced, or cut into matchsticks of 1/4 inch.
1 medium onion, chopped
1/4 cup red wine
2 28 oz. cans San Marzano Tomatoes
1 lb. Rigatoni

Procedure:

  1. Bring a large pot of water to boil for the pasta
  2. Heat the olive oil in a skillet on medium high.
  3. Add the garlic and stir well for about 30 seconds, add the pancetta and lower heat to medium.
  4. Cook pancetta, stirring regularly, for about 4 minutes.
  5. Raise heat to high and continue stirring until the fat is rendered and pancetta is just before getting crisp, about 2 minutes more.
  6. Remove pancetta with a slotted spoon and set aside.
  7. Pour off the fat except for about 1/4 cup.
  8. Add the onion and cook until soft, stirring to scrap up the fond. Add the wine and deglaze the pan.
  9. Add the rigatoni to the boiling water and cook for one minute less than al dente.
  10. Crush the tomatoes and add to the skillet. Add back the pancetta. Cook on medium for about 8 to 10 minutes.
  11. Drain the rigatoni and add to the sauce, mix well for about 30 seconds.
  12. Serve with grated Pecorino-Romano
  13. We recommend a good Italian red wine to accompany thus dish.

One of our favorites is a Barbera D’Asti Superiore from the Piemonte region of Italy. Quigley Fine Wines imports an excellent one called Sola. It is produced by Agricola Bertolino.

Sola Barbera D'Asti

Pollo con Pesto (Pesto-Crusted Pan-Roasted Chicken)

In Chicken, Recipes on July 8, 2014 at 10:29 AM

Pesto-Crusted Roast Chicken

Pesto-Crusted Pan-Roasted Chicken

(Preparation time, about 1 hour – Serves from 2 to 4, depending on chicken size)

Ingredients:

1 whole chicken, halved
3 tbsp. olive oil
4 tbsp. Pesto Sauce
½ cup + 2 tbsp. dry white wine
Kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper

Procedure:

1. Pre-heat oven to 450 degrees.
2. In a cast iron skillet large enough to hold the chicken, heat the olive oil on medium high until shimmering, about 4 to 5 minutes.
3. Rinse and pat dry the chicken.
4. Sprinkle both sides of each chicken half liberally with salt & pepper.
5. Gently place chicken halves skin side down in the pan, and brown for 8 to 9 minutes. Periodically place a weight on the chicken pieces pressing down to insure that the skin gets crispy.
6. Turn chicken pieces skin side up and remove pan to top rack of oven. Roast for 30 minutes, basting skin with fat drippings after 15 minutes.
7. In the meantime mix the pesto with 2 tbsp. of the white wine.
8. When chicken is done, remove the pan from the oven, re-baste the chicken and spoon pesto over each half. Return to oven and continue cooking for 3 minutes.
9. When done, remove chicken from the pan, set aside and keep warm while preparing the gravy.
10. To make the gravy, pour off all but 2 tbsp. of fat, retaining the solids, heat pan on stove on high, add the ½ cup of wine, bring to boil and de-glaze the pan scraping up the fond. Serve gravy alongside the chicken.

Please see: Summer Serendipity

An Experiment in Stuffing a Roast

In General Articles on September 16, 2012 at 7:10 PM

Pork Tenderloins are a great boon to home chefs. They are pre-packaged, usually as a pair of 1 to 1.5 lb. pieces in the pack, easy to find in supermarkets and ready to cook. Sold either seasoned, with a variety of spices or marinades, or plain, i.e., unseasoned, they are tender, relatively low in fat and high in protein, and with them you can put dinner on the table in less than an hour.

We have roasted them in the oven, cooked them on the grill and cut them into medallions, but until recently, never stuffed them. Stuffing chicken or veal cutlets is pretty simple; stuffing larger pieces of meat, like pork tenderloin is a bit more complex and challenging. You need a sharp knife, a meat mallet, wax paper and butcher’s twine.

With our friends Steve and Barbara coming to dinner last week and with a package of seasoned pork tenderloins sitting in the freezer, we decided to try stuffing and roasting them. The tenderloins were seasoned with black pepper and mushrooms, so we thought that a simple, Italian-based stuffing would work well. Nothing is simpler and more favorable than the tri-colored combination of the flag of Italy, green, white and red; in this case,  fresh basil, fresh mozzarella and sun-dried tomatoes. And since the tenderloins are low in fat and hence would be dry, a white wine reduction gravy would also work well.

Having identified the ingredients all that was left was devising a plan. After slicing the tenderloins lengthwise, flattening them would be necessary as they would be too thick to stuff. And, because they are so lean, we didn’t think they would properly brown in the oven, even at a high setting of 450 degrees. So searing them in a sauté pan before stuffing seemed to make sense. That would give us the added benefit of providing a base of fond with which to make the gravy.

The process went quite smoothly and was completed, with the exception of the final roasting step, long before our guests arrived. As a result, we were able to enjoy their company with drinks and appetizers and then sit down to a delicious dinner of Roasted Stuffed Pork Tenderloin with a minimum of last minute work in the kitchen.

Coq au Vin

In Chicken, Meat, Recipes on February 25, 2012 at 12:49 PM

Coq au Vin

Serves 8 or serves 4 with leftovers.

Adapted from several cookbooks, see East Side, East Side, All Around the Town

Ingredients:

2 Bell & Evans Free Range Chickens, quartered, about 8 or 9 lbs. total weight
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 bottles of Côtes du Rhône
3 bay leaves
3 sprigs of thyme
1 large shallot coarsely chopped
3 cloves of garlic, sliced
¾ lb. pearl onions, about 16 to 20 depending on size
½ lb. thick sliced bacon
1 lb. Cremini mushrooms
¼ lb. unsalted butter
3/4 cup flour
½ cup cognac
2 & ½ cups unsalted beef stock
6 tbsps. Beef demi-glace

Preparation:

Steps 1 to 7 take about 1 hour and can be performed a day in advance and refrigerated overnight.

1.    Prepare a bouquet garni, by wrapping the bay leaves, thyme sprigs, shallot & garlic in a piece of cheese cloth and tying it off.
2.    Separate the drumsticks from the thighs and cut each breast in half leaving the wings attached to the upper half of the breast. You will end up with 16 pieces of chicken. Liberally salt and pepper each piece.
3.    Place the chicken pieces and the bouquet garni in a large non-reactive bowl and cover with the contents of 1 bottle of the wine. Cover the bowl and refrigerate, marinating the chicken for 6 to 8 hours or overnight.
4.    Bring a small pot of water to boil, add the pearl onions and blanch for 1 minute. Remove the onions and when cooled, remove and discard their skins.
5.    Re-boil the water; add the bacon slices and par-boil for about 3 minutes to remove some of the saltiness. Drain and pat the bacon dry. Heat a non-stick sauté pan on medium and fry the bacon until cooked but still soft about 3 or 4 minutes. Remove the bacon, slice into ½ inch wide pieces and set aside.
6.    Remove most of the bacon fat from the sauté pan leaving about two tablespoons.  Add 2 tbsps. of butter and then the skinned onions, brown on high heat for about 3 minutes, remove and set aside.
7.    Repeat step 6 with the cremini mushrooms, adding 2 tbsps. of butter and browning the mushrooms for about 5 minutes.
8.    When the chicken pieces are finished marinating, drain and pat them dry; reserve the marinade and the bouquet garni.
9.    Dredge the chicken pieces in flour. Melt 4 tbsps. of butter in a stainless steel sauté pan on medium heat and brown the chicken pieces well, for about 10 minutes turning them several times. You will probably have to do this in two batches.
10.    Remove the chicken to a large casserole, or Dutch Oven.
11.    Add the cognac to the sauté pan; bring to a boil and deglaze the pan about 1 minute. Pour the cognac and the fond over the chicken; add the reserved marinade, 2nd bottle of wine, beef stock and bouquet garni.
12.    Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium and cook for 30 minutes adding the mushrooms, onions, bacon after 15 minutes.
13.    Remove the chicken, bacon, onions and mushrooms, set aside and keep warm. Remove and discard the bouquet garni.
14.    Strain the liquid through a fine sieve, and pour off the fat. Clean the casserole, return the sauce to it and bring to a boil, add the demi-glace to thicken the sauce and when it reaches the consistency thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, add back all of the set aside ingredients, stir well and heat covered for about 15 to 30 minutes on low, prior to serving.

Serve with Mashed Potatoes and Côtes du Rhône

Please see East Side, East Side, All round the Town

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