Saturday, January 8, 2011

PostHeaderIcon Jenn: Simple Saturday

The other day my son asked me how I became such a wonderful cook.  Kind of brings a tear to your eye doesn't it?  I don't consider myself a wonderful cook - a good cook, average cook, but not wonderful.  I do know women who are amazing cooks.  My friend Lisa is one of those. You go to her house and as your hanging out in the kitchen chatting over a glass of wine, she is toasting french bread for croutons and making a Cesar salad from scratch - eggs, anchovies, the real deal and it is effortless. My cooking is a bit more chaotic - pans flying, dirty dishes everywhere - you get the idea. I cook about 6 nights a week.  Sometimes its a crock pot in the morning or quick pasta sauce that afternoon.  Nothing too fancy.  The other day I was speaking to my sister and she was making Chicken Francaise for dinner - something I love but have never tried to make. It just never dawned on me to try it.  So computer in hand, I googled chicken francaise and read a lot of recipes - all similar but different somehow - many saying it was a difficult dish to prepare.  I decided to forge ahead - if it didn't work out the dogs would have chicken for dinner.  I combined a few recipes added this and that - and I have to say - it was wonderful.  I really surprised myself by how good it was.  It gave me a great boost to think I made something that good and the whole family loved it - seconds all around.  So if your feeling like trying something new, here is the recipe.  Enjoy!

Chicken Francaise

6 chicken breasts pounded thin
1 egg
1 cup flour
Butter
Olive Oil
1 lemon
paprika
garlic powder
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 cup chicken stock

Cut lemon in half and use the juice of one half to mix together with the egg.  Add enough water to thin mixture out to create a wash.  In a shallow dish mix flour, pinch of paprika and pinch of garlic powder, mix well.  Dredge chicken through flour then into egg mixture.  Fry in large pan with butter and oil until brown on both sides.  Remove chicken and place aside.  Take the other half of the lemon cut two or three thin slices and add to pan to caramelize - squeeze out juice of lemon into pan.  Once the lemon slices have become mushy and brown, remove.  Add white wine, let it reduce.  Add chicken stock, reduce. Add chicken back into the pan and simmer 20 minutes, turning occasionally.  You can thicken sauce before serving with corn starch if desired.  I served the chicken over penne and covered with the francaise sauce - delicious!

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