Monday, May 14, 2007

Chicken Breasts with Herbs De Provence and Mushrooms

Well, I found another one! Yes, another very old clip from my original blog that hasn’t been posted here yet. This recipe is very similar in technique to the Chicken Marsala video recipe that was posted last month. Regarding that recipe, I received several emails from viewers who either couldn’t have, or didn’t want to, use the Marsala wine. This one is wine-free, and just as delicious. One quick note; I used a non-stick pan in the clip since I was using skinless chicken breasts. I always try to film these using the techniques and tools I think will be most successful for the home cook. If I had used a stainless steel skillet (as I would have in the restaurant setting), many people trying this at home, would have had problems with the skinless chicken sticking to the bottom of the pan. I won’t bore you with the details about why in this post, but for most of us a high-quality, non-stick pan would be the safest choice.

This simple dish combines a rich mushroom pan sauce, with moist chicken breasts scented with “Herbs De Provence.” Herbs De Provence is a mixture of dried herbs from the South of France, and usually includes Basil, Thyme, Savory, Rosemary, Tarragon, Lavender, Fennel, Marjoram and Chervil. You should be able to find it in the dried spice/herb section of any major grocery store. Be sure to look carefully before you buy it, it should be a nice fresh green color. If it’s brown and faded, it’s probably old and not flavorful. This herb mixture is a staple in my kitchen and should be found in any serious cook’s pantry. And yes, before you ask, of course you can make the same dish without the mushrooms. Enjoy.



Ingredients:
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 cups chicken stock/broth
2 cups sliced mushrooms
1 tbl herbs de Provence (so not optional)
2 cloves garlic
black pepper and salt to taste
3 tbl olive oil
3 tbl unsalted butter
flour
fresh herbs to garnish (optional)

20 comments:

Tyler said...

I kind of wish you would bore us with why it would stick, and what to do about it. Perhaps you can bore us here.

Chef John said...

ok since you asked. Chicken breasts, without skin, sticks very easily to non-coated pans, and then they tears when you try and turn them and you soon have shredded chicken strips! Most home cooks dont use the nice thick bottomed Stainless steel (SS) pans that are common in the pro kitchen. Which are very heavy and dense and when heated to a very high temp will sear the suface of the chicken and it wont stick. At home, most cooks dont use these pro-quality pans and dont heat them to the high temps needed to sear skinless breasts without sticking (think smoke alarm sound) So for these 2 main reasons the non-stick is a safer bet. The home cook can get a nice sear at a lower temp and not have to worry about tearing the meat. Its amazing how hot those restaurant cooks gets the SS pans before the meat goes in. the home cook doesnt have the luxury of the industrial fan exhust system!

~Bee Nee~ said...

looks yummy and fuss-free.. my kind of recipe! can't wait to give this a try =)

Tyler said...

Ah! Thanks for the info. I was curious, because it was my understanding that you shouldn't use non-stick when you are planning on creating a pan sauce because you don't get the fond that you would from non-non-stick.

Chef John said...

Yes, you are correct. Again, I try to balance the proper technique with the realities of the home cook viewer. For those marinated skinless breasts the degree of difficulty would have been very high in a non-coated pan. Besides, as you noticed the sauce was full flavored and didnt suffer greatly from the lack of fond in the pan. Also, dont forget, for non-stick sauteing the "fond" actually does built on the meat itself to some degree. If you watch the Chicken Marsala clipagain you will see me use the SS pan and build a fond, but the chicken had skin on.

Tyler said...

I appreciate you looking out for us n00bs. ^_^

Anonymous said...

I lust after BTUs :D

Well maybe not, but but I really would like to have the oomph at home to get that incredible searing heat. Alas, I do not.

I also appreciate the explanation it (hopefully) gives me the background to make decisions when making other dishes.

KrazyKook said...

You're such a great help in my kitchen!! I had taken out boneless pork chops..wanted something different so of course I come looking for your help. Yes, you posted this for chicken, but I replaced it with chops and served over rice...You Be The Man Again!!

Anonymous said...

Hello, your blog is great and video's are very helpful. thank you. Should I use regular olive oil or extra virgin olive oil?

Chef John said...

regular

Andrea said...

Hi Chef! I tried making this last night.. The sauce was still too watery even after I simmered the chicken in it for awhile. What could have caused this? I added about a tablespoon more flour to thicken it, but the flour formed into small lumps which took awhile to disappear. Some smaller lumps didnt totally disappear. What caused this and what can I do to avoid this next time? Also, what's the difference between using flour and cornstarch to thicken sauce? Thanks! :)

Chef John said...

You can't add raw flour to a sauce. So don't. Just boil the sauce on high until it reduces. (without the cooked chicken in it so it doesnt overcook)

Cornstarch can be used at the end, which I will demo in a vid this week.

Atif said...

Made this last night with some penne, and I let the pasta absorb the sauce just like in your other videos ;)

sequimteeth said...

Wow, nice recipe. Used shitake instead of button (cause I had 'em) but other than that stayed exactly to the method and ingredients. It was a super meal! Served with asparagus risoto and a small salad paired with a syrah. It came out just as you showed it would. Thank you. This one is worth a donation. :-)

gavin said...

This dish turned out very well. i wish i would had turned the heat to medium when the flour was added. Also maybe a tsp to a tsp and a half of herbes de provence. thanks chef

Anonymous said...

Hello Chef John. New to your site, but love what I've seen so far. What a great thing you're doing here! One quick question for this recipe...would a cast iron skillet be appropriate to use for this? Thanks!

Chef John said...

Sure!

Billy Lykken said...

Chef John tonight I used your pork tenderloin technique and applied this recipe to it. It turned out delicious, thanks!! xo

Zesty said...

Thank you chef John!! I just made this for dinner today and my boyfriend loved it. It has so much flavor and the herbes de provence made the kitchen smell like a fancy restaurant. The only thing i changed was using portobello mushroom. All in all this recipe was a HIT!!! thank you again.. love watching and surfing your site for delicious recipe, it never fails me :)

Dionne Jackson said...

This dish is ridiculously awesome and easy. The sauce was so good, I wished I had doubled the recipe. Being new to cooking, I'm not quite brave enough to make any kind of changes yet. My husband loved this dish and can't wait to have it again. Thanks Chef John, once again you've hit it out of the park.