Saturday, February 12, 2011

February 12: Chicken in Spicy and Sweet Onion Sauce with Goat Cheese Smashed Potatoes and a Watercress and Cucumber Salad

2 to 2 ¼ pounds small red-skinned potatoes
   Coarse salt
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
4 6-ounce boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
   Coarse black pepper
2 medium yellow onions, thinly sliced
1 to 1 ½ teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes
2 teaspoons dried thyme leaves
4 tablespoons honey
3 large garlic cloves, chopped
½ cup white wine
2 cups chicken stock or broth
½ cup half-and-half or cream
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces
½ to ¾ cup crumbled goat cheese
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 bunches of watercress, cleaned and trimmed
½ seedless cucumber, cut in half lengthwise then sliced into half-moons

Cut the potatoes in half and place in a pot, then cover with water. Cover the pot with a lid and bring the water to a boil. Salt the water and potatoes. Leave the lid off the pot and cook at a rolling boil until tender, 10 to 12 minutes.

Preheat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add 2 tablespoons of the EVOO. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and add to the hot skillet. Brown the chicken on both sides, 3 minutes per side. Remove and reserve the meat, covered with foil.

Add another tablespoon of the EVOO, the onions, thyme, honey, garlic, and red pepper flakes.

Season the onions with salt and pepper and cook, stirring frequently for 7 to 8 minutes. You want the onions to get really brown and caramelized. Add the white wine and the stock. Turn up the heat to high and bring the liquids to a simmer. Once at a simmer, return the chicken to the skillet. Cook the chicken in the sauce for about 10 minutes, flipping the chicken over halfway through the cooking time.

While the chicken is cooking, prepare the salad and finish the smashed potatoes.

Drain the potatoes and return to the hot pot. Add the half-and-half, the butter, and the goat cheese to the potatoes

and smash with a fork or potato masher to the desired consistency. Season the potatoes with salt and pepper. Reserve the potatoes on the cook top, covered to keep warm.

For the watercress salad, in a bowl combine the Dijon mustard, the remaining 2 tablespoons of cider vinegar, the remaining tablespoon of honey, and salt and pepper.

In a slow, steady stream, whisk in the remaining 3 tablespoons of EVOO.

Toss the watercress and sliced cucumbers with the dressing.

Arrange the chicken breasts on dinner or serving plates. Pour a generous amount of sauce with the onions over the chicken breasts. (You will really enjoy dipping a little of those smashed potatoes in the sauce!) Serve the watercress and cucumber salad on the side.


I cooked this meal for lunch today because we are going to a Valentine's Banquet at our church tonight. They're serving us tenderloin. This is a variation on the cider vinegar chicken I cooked two nights ago. It is very similar except that the chicken is cooked in wine and seasoned with red pepper flakes instead of being cooked in vinegar. And the potatoes have goat cheese added. I added the honey to the salad. It tastes a lot less sour that way. This is a very good meal. Both are delicious, but I think I like the first one better, since it's less spicy. The goat cheese adds a new element to the potatoes that makes it interesting.

I was having memories of last year after the Superbowl going to Denny's to get a free breakfast. We don't have a Denny's around here, so I got up this morning and made a Grand Slam - homemade. My husband loved it and I was glad we didn't have to drive an hour. My pancakes aren't as good as Denny's, but they're good enough.

No comments:

Post a Comment