Chicken Cutlets with Rosemary-Mushroom Sauce

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As I was getting ready to put this together for dinner last night, I started thinking about changes I needed to make or at least could make. It seemed like there were a few changes that would have made it easier/faster to put together. So after it was done, I felt like this was another recipe that I adapted and started to try and think of what all I needed to blog about. Then I realized that I really only made one change. It was insignificant, yet a huge change. Instead of using tarragon as the recipe called for I used rosemary. Not a big deal but it kind of changes the name. Why that switch? Well, I had some fresh rosemary in the fridge that needed to be used. Plus the store had been out of tarragon when I was there and I hadn’t gone back to check to see if they had some. But it worked out great.

Now, I had thought about making some other changes, namely the broth. It’s chicken broth plus veggies, cooked for awhile and then you strain out the veggies. Kind of feels like we are making vegetable broth. If that is the case, why not just say “use vegetable broth”? Seemed like a lot of work for accomplishing what you could buy in the store. PLUS, I had some leftover vegetable broth in the fridge that frankly I wasn’t sure what I was going to do with it. It would last for awhile so I wasn’t that worried but why not just use it? You could just use the smaller amount to begin with. Seemed to make sense to me.

Well, in the end I did it the other way (the way the recipe said) that was more work. I decided that I wanted to stay as true to the recipe as possible. Plus, was I really making vegetable broth or just upping the flavor of the chicken broth? Anyway, I did use the vegetable broth as the liquid for making the orzo I used as the side. Turned out well. Not a big difference in flavor of the orzo plus, once you mixed up the orzo with the mushroom sauce and chicken you couldn’t tell a difference anyway. And the other side is some steamed broccoli. The kids love it, believe it or not, and it’s a nice healthy side that goes with a lot of stuff. Just don’t pay attention to the cheese which detracts a little from the healthiness of it. :o)

The only other “change” which was somewhat unintentional and that was I only used 4 cutlets rather than 8. I wasn’t thinking when I took the chicken out to thaw. But four worked just fine for us to eat, there just wasn’t any chicken leftover. Which is okay. I’ve said before I try to cut back on the amount of food I make. Good meal, the sauce it what really makes as it just some chicken with the sauce.

Recipe taken from the April 2013 issue of Cooking Light magazine

2 cups chicken stock
1/2 carrot cut into one inch pieces (I used two shorter/thinner ones cut small – what’s “half a carrot”?)
1/2 celery stalk cut into one inch pieces (or most of a whole one, diced)
1/4 onion, halved
1 bay leaf
1 garlic clove, crushed (bang it with the side of a knife – crushes it AND peels it)
4 (6 oz) chicken breasts, cut in half (horizontally) to make 8 thin cutlets
1/2 TSP salt, divided in half
1/2 TSP ground black pepper, divided in half
3 TBSP flour
2 TBSP oil, divided in half
2 TSP butter, divided in half
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1 TBSP water
2 1/2 TSP cornstarch
1 TBSP chopped fresh rosemary

Place first 6 ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Cook for about 6 minutes or until reduced to 1 1/4 cups. (Side note – I’ve never figured out how to accurately measure this. So, I just let it go for awhile. 6 minutes, 10 minutes, something like that. I never measured it, didn’t think it mattered that much.). Remove solids from the broth. Discard solids; set broth aside.

Sprinkle chicken cutlets with half the salt and pepper. Place flour on a plate or shallow dish. Dredge cutlets in the flour. Heat 1 TBSP of oil and 1 TSP of butter in a large skillet over medium high heat. Place four cutlets in the skillet and cook for a few minutes on each side, until done. Repeat with remaining oil, butter and cutlets. Set cutlets aside and keep warm.

Add mushrooms to the pan; cook for about 5 minutes. Add broth to the pan. Bring to a boil, scraping the bottom of the pan to loosen anything stuck there. Combine water and cornstarch in a bowl. Add to the pan. Cook for a few minutes, until the sauce has thickened. Add remaining salt and pepper, as well as the rosemary. Stir to combine and let cook for a minute or two. Spoon sauce over the chicken when serving.

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