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?
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!!