Saveur Magazine has many tantalizing new recipes and sometimes some that aren’t new but may be forgotten. Last week they shared a recipe for Chicken Galliano. It reminded me of several similar recipes I’ve made with chicken over the years. I’m a big fan of pan sauteed chicken and integral reduced sauces. I’m also a huge fan of goat cheese and prosciutto! So this recipe was right up my alley. The only thing I thought I would change is the Galliano. It’s a good thing I didn’t have my heart set on it, because my liquor store was sold out. I love the hazelnut flavor of Frangelico and decided to use that as my sauce flavoring. Galliano is a wonderful liqueur and I would encourage you to try this with it or another anise enhanced spirit. So Chicken Galliano became Chicken Frangelico!
I consider this dish to be a work in progress. Although the sauce was very good, I believe it can be better and I intend to play with it until perfected. Goat cheese and prosciutto is a classic combination, but again I think there may be better combinations like stronger, saltier ham. I used a prosciutto de parmi and it was a little light in flavor. Be careful not to use too much goat cheese or it will overwhelm the chicken. A little goes a long way. Crisp bits of the prosciutto or whatever you choose would also be nice to sprinkle in with the mushrooms.
Although I love cast iron, I should have used a heavy-gauge stainless saute pan. It’s hard to scrape up the browned bits when deglazing if you can’t see them against the black surface! Those little bits are the key to the intensity of flavor in the sauce.
A note on pan-deglazed sauces…. You can really get creative with sauces if you understand the basic formula or model for a good sauce. You start by sauteing meat and the meat juices and browned bits stay in the pan. Then you use a liquid to deglaze such as stock, broth or wine. You reduce the sauce by cooking and allowing additional moisture to evaporate which intensifies the flavor and helps the consistency. Lastly you enrich it with final flavorings of your choice like cognac, vinegar, herbs. Leeks or a similar aromatic would be a nice addition to the sauce. A little cream would also work well to transform this into a Frangelico cream sauce. The variations are somewhat limitless. Use your taste-buds are your guide. If you’re interested in really learning about the art of making sauces, I highly recommend James Peterson’s book, Sauces. After all, it is the sauce that can make the difference between a good dish to a great one.
So, this dish will become a comfort food staple at our house. It’s fairly simple and is great comfort food. The next time I make it, I’ll be sure to share my tweaks and trials here. I’d love it if you’d share your comments and findings and perhaps we’ll come up with our own masterpiece together!
- 6 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (pounded thin)
- Sea salt and cracked pepper
- 12 tbsp herbed goat cheese, softened
- 6 thin slices of prosciutto, serrano or pancetta
- 6 tbsp unsalted butter, chilled
- 1 lb crimini mushrooms, sliced
- All purpose flour (about 1 cup for dredging)
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 cup organic chicken broth
- 1/4 cup Frangelico liqueur
- 3 tbsp good quality aged balsamic vinegar
- 2 tbsp Italian parsley, chopped
- 1 tbsp chives, chopped
- 10 red potatoes, quartered
- sea salt (or truffle salt)
- olive oil
- Black pepper, freshly cracked
Preheat oven to 400 degrees
Toss potatoes in olive oil in a baking dish and season with salt and pepper. I absolutely love truffle flavored salt and highly recommend it. Roast potatoes in the oven for about an hour or until soft. Turn them occasionally so they don’t stick to the pan.
Carefully pound the chicken in between sheets of wax paper until it’s about 1/4 inch thick. Be sure not to over pound or it will fall apart. Season with salt and pepper. Take one breast half at a time and spread one side evenly with goat cheese and top with a slice of prosciutto. Make sure any excess fat on the prosciutto is removed. Roll into a tight cylinder and tie the ends (about 1 inch from each end) with kitchen twine. Remove excess twine.
Heat 3 tbsp of butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms in batches and saute without stirring for 5 minutes. This will allow them to brown. Be sure not to crowd too many mushrooms in the pan or they will steam not brown. Stir mushrooms and continue cooking until softened and browned (about 7-8 minutes.) Transfer them to a plate and wipe the skillet with a paper towel.
Pour flour on a plate and dredge each chicken “roll” in the flour. Shake off any excess. Heat 2 tbsp. of butter and 2 tbsp of olive oil in the skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook, turning until nicely browned and cooked through (about 14 minutes.) Transfer chicken rolls to a plate.
Add Frangelico to the skillet and deglaze, scraping off any burned bits from the bottom. Add chicken broth and allow to lightly boil while continuing to stir until sauce has reduced by 1/3. Add balsamic vinegar, chives and season with salt and pepper to taste. Return the mushrooms and chicken to the skillet, cook and turn into sauce until nicely coated and warmed through.
Transfer the chicken to a platter. Remove skillet from heat and swirl in 2 tbsp of butter into sauce. Spoon over the chicken. and sprinkle with parsley. Serve with roasted potatoes.