Monday, July 18, 2011

Chicken with Shallots

I've been in a little bit of a rut lately.  I haven't really felt like doing anything, much less cooking, which is pretty strange for me.  When I do get in the kitchen I don't really feel like being adventurous or making some grandiose recipe.  I just want easy, simple, classic recipes that I know I can count on to be great.  Whenever I'm feeling this way I turn to Ina Garten.  Ina never disappoints.

I pulled out my How Easy Is That? book by Ina and literally had a field day marking recipes that I wanted to try. This recipe for chicken with shallots was a standout for me, not only because the whole family can eat it (allergies, etc.), but also because I love the pan roasting method that Ina uses to cook the chicken and well, let's face it.....she tops off the chicken with a creamy buttery shallot sauce that is all kinds of heavenly.  That sauce was so good that I poured it over my potatoes and green beans too.  In fact, the entire meal was so good that I'm already thinking about when I'll make it again.
 Chicken with Shallots
Adapted from Ina Garten's How Easy Is That?
Serves 4

4 boneless chicken breasts, skin on (6-8 oz. each)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons vegetable or canola oil
1/4 cup dry white wine (I used chicken stock)
1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (I used fresh orange juice)
1/4 cup minced shallots 
3 tablespoons heavy cream
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, diced at room temp

Preheat the oven to 425F.  Pat the chicken breasts dry with paper towels and sprinkle them generously on both sides with salt and pepper.  In a 12-inch cast-iron skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat for 2 minutes,  until it begins to smoke.  Place the chicken breasts, skin side down, in the skillet and cook for 4-5 minutes without moving, until golden brown.

Using tongs, turn the chicken breasts skin side up, place the skillet in the oven, and roast for 12-15 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through.

Meanwhile, in a medium saute pan, combine the white wine, lemon juice, and shallots and cook over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes, until only 2 tablespoons of liquid remain in the pan.  If it reduces too much, add an extra splash of white wine or water.  Add the cream, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and bring to a full boil.  Remove from heat, add the diced butter, and swirl the pan until the butter is incorporated.  Don't reheat or the sauce will "break"!!  Sprinkle with salt and serve the chicken hot with the sauce spooned over it.
Notes/Results:  This is a terrific dish!  The subtlety of the shallots really shines in this velvety sauce.  We served the chicken with baby red potatoes and fresh green beans and it was magnificent.  I had to laugh when I looked up and everyone was topping their chicken, their potatoes, and their beans with the shallot sauce.  The sauce was so good that we wanted to put it on everything!!  I think this is a terrific family meal, but I also think it would make for an impressive meal to serve company.

I did make a few changes to the recipe, based on what I had on hand.  I didn't have any white wine so I subbed chicken stock.  I also didn't have any lemons so I used fresh orange juice.  I was a little nervous about using orange juice in place of lemon juice, but most of the juice reduced to nothing so I don't think it changed the flavor of the sauce overall.

Stay tuned for more Ina dishes....  I've got her Fresh Peach Cake getting ready to go in the oven now!!


  1. I definitely have periods where I feel like that. It's a recharging time, I think. Although, I know some people who wouldn't even make this. It sounds freakin' amazing!

  2. Ina is my girl and this is one recipe I haven't gotten to yet...but will remedy that soon.

  3. The photo says it all-simple, comforting and delicious.


  4. Amazing, that sauce looks like a wonderful meal in itself!

  5. Finding a delicious meal that's also easy is no easy task! This looks like a winner to me!

  6. And I have shallots to use up, too! Hooray!! This sounds delicious. Ina rarely disappoints :)

  7. this looks delicious I hear you I am not super into cooking right now but 8 months pregnant :-)

  8. I totally hear you - I've been feeling the same lately! This does look very delicious, though, and a great reason to get into the kitchen!

  9. I know what you mean daaaaahling, I've been feeling like that myself lately. Its cool that you go to Ina when you are in rut, because in all honesty, I go to sandwiches and frozen food *sock horror*. Delicious dinner :D
    *kisses* HH

  10. I think we all go through stages like that with our cooking. Great that you found such a wonderful dish to help you through that rut. Looking forward to that fresh peach cake now :-)
    Sue xo

  11. I'm with ya Ina never disappoints! This looks fabulous!

  12. This really looks tasty. Something about the hot summer days that make the kitchen a good place to avoid.

  13. Good ole Ina. She never lets me down. Somehow, I missed this recipe and I own the cookbook, too! I'm bookmarking this, for a work night easy dinner. Looks delish!

  14. Look at how perfectly cooked that chicken is! Full white but not dry at all, you rock, Kim!

  15. I think I could just eat a bowl of that sauce with a spoon. I need to pull my Ina books out again--I've been missing her. ;-)


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