Saturday, February 15, 2014

Recipe: Chicken and Mushrooms - Easier than you think!

Let's give credit where credits due:  I saw this page in the February Good Housekeeping and couldn't resist trying it for (of all nights) Valentine's Day Dinner with BD.  Thank you Good Housekeeping!! AMAZINGLY GOOD!!  FRENCH RESTAURANT GOOD!!
February 2014 Good Housekeeping

I saw this recipe for Herbed Skillet Chicken and thought of it as a suggestion or outline, a basic skeleton of a recipe that can easily be tweeked by the comfortable cook.  Here is what I came up with!
Look at all that yummy sauce and beautifully roasted skin!

Oh my gosh, I am still thinking about this dinner the next morning!  It was pretty easy:  Here's my take on this recipe:

Lisa's Easier than you think Chicken and Mushrooms

1 lb. button mushrooms
1 shallot
Various Chicken pieces (I bought a whole cut up chicken and used the drums, thighs and one breast)
1/3 cup chicken stock or broth
2 T rich oil (I used olive oil and left over duck fat)
1/2 teaspoon herbs de Provence
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
Lawry's season Salt

Preheat oven 450 degrees

Clean the mushrooms and shallot.  Cut the shallot in quarters, and half each quarter (or just make thick slices).  Remove stems from mushrooms and cut each in half lengthwise.
Make sure your chicken pieces are super dry.  I wiped them and blotted them with paper towels.  I also took them out of the fridge about 30 minutes before I started cooking them, so they start to come up to room temperature.  
Heat oil in cast iron pan (with high walls, like le creuset).  Season chicken pieces with salt and pepper and place skin side down in pan.  Let them sizzle for about 5 minutes to get that skin super crispy.   
Remove  chicken from pan and add mushrooms and shallot.  Add thyme and herbs, a quick shake of season salt and some salt and pepper.  Stir to get everything well mixed.  Let them cook for one minute on medium high heat, then remove from heat and add chicken (skin side up this time) on top.  I sprinkled a bit of all the seasonings (salt, pepper, seasoned salt, thyme, and herbs de Provence) on top of the chicken, too.
Place in hot oven for 30 minutes.  About half way through, check on them and give those mushrooms a good stir and add that chicken broth.  Put back in oven until done.
Chicken is done when internal temp reaches 165, about 35 minutes.

Now for the rich, amazing sauce:
Remove chicken from pot and let rest on a plate.  In a small saucepan, make a rioux (or is it rue?) of 1 tablespoon butter to 1 tablespoon flour.  Cook for 2 minutes, to cook off the flour taste.  Add rioux to pan and stir. Yes, the mushrooms and onions are still in the pan.  Stir gently, but the broth/mushroom juice is full of this tasty yummy goodness.  The sauce should thicken slightly and be a gorgeous light brown.  Add chicken back to pan, nestle in gently, making sure to leave that crispy skin crispy.

I served this up with a Rice-A-Roni (wild rice) and green beans.  It was up there on the best dinners I ever made!

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