Chicken breasts… mushrooms… Marsala wine… what’s not to like? This classic Italian dish is a breeze to prepare, and a perfect option for a romantic dinner for two.
4 boneless chicken breast filets
salt and pepper
1 Tbs olive oil
1 Tbs butter
1 shallot, minced
3 cups of mushrooms, sliced thin
1/2 cup Marsala wine
1/2 cup chicken stock (or water)
minced Italian parsley
If the chicken filets are too thick, slice them in half running the knife parallel to the cutting board, and pressing the filets gently down with the palm of your hand. Pound them slightly to even the thickness. Season with salt and pepper.
Heat the butter and olive oil in medium-high heat on a large skillet, when the butter foams and starts to get golden, add the chicken filets and cook until they develop a nice color on both sides (about 4 minutes per side, depending on your stove). Remove them to a platter, tent with aluminum foil.
Add the diced shallot to the pan (if necessary add a little more olive oil, but you probably won’t need it), cook in medium heat for a couple of minutes, add all the mushrooms and cook stirring every once in a while until they start to get soft. Season lightly with salt, add the Marsala wine, and cook until almost fully absorbed, about 5 minutes. Add the chicken stock (or water), place the chicken filets back in the pan, cover, and simmer on low heat for 10 minutes or until fully cooked through.
Remove the chicken to a serving platter, increase the heat to reduce the mushroom sauce to the consistency you like. Optional step: add a couple of tablespoons of cold butter in small pieces, swirling the sauce after each addition. Adjust seasoning, spoon the sauce over the chicken and sprinkle parsley on top. Serve immediately.
to print the recipe, click here
I didn’t give a precise source for this recipe, because I’ve been making it for years, the first time I probably got it from one of my cooking books back in Brazil, decades ago. Some recipes will instruct you to coat the filets in a little seasoned flour. I prefer the texture of the meat seared without it. The flour coating does help thicken the sauce in the end, but I don’t mind skipping it. Similarly, most recipes call for a final addition of butter. Depending on my mood, I might add it or not. For this dinner, I omitted it, the sauce was plenty flavorful without it.
I only had regular mushrooms, but if you find creminis or other types of mushrooms, add them to the party. Would you be considering a final swirl of truffle oil? A word of caution: truffle oil is made by infusing olive oil with bis-methylthio-methane, a chemical that mimics their taste. I never buy the stuff, being exposed to enough organic chemicals in my work. Still, some shaved truffles (the real thing) on top of this dish could turn that dinner date into “An Affair to Remember” 😉
ONE YEAR AGO: Home, sweet home
TWO YEARS AGO: Levain Bread with Caramelized Onions