During a busy weekday, I sometimes find myself looking for recipes on my phone at the grocery store because I’ve had no time to plan dinner. Epicurious.com, which is a recipe collection from several different publications, including Bon appetit, and Gourmet, is one of my go to places to search. One link led to another and I found myself looking at a beautiful plate of perfectly pan roasted chicken with a gravy like sauce. Sometimes a nice looking photo is all it’scneeded to convince me to try the recipe. Plus, it looked very hearty and comforting, which is what I usually crave after a long day at work.
The recipe seemed straight forward: brown the chicken, let simmer in a leek, white wine, and chicken broth sauce, then reduce the sauce with dijon mustard. Roasted potatoes and a green salad was recommended as sides to go with it, along with the rest of the bottle of white wine
I made the potatoes first since they take the longest. First I boiled up some water in a medium sized pot. I only made 1/4 of the recipe ( about 1.5lbs of potatoes), since I’m cooking for two. While the water is boiling, I peeled the baby potatoes.
Cook the potatoes in the boiling water for two minutes. The potatoes should be softened on the outside but not cooked in the middle.
Drain the potatoes and set them aside until cool enough to handle. Use a fork to scrape grooves all over the length of the potatoes.
Drizzle about 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a small baking dish and place it in a 425 degree oven. Allow the oil get hot in the dish, about 5 minutes. Place the potatoes in the dish, turn to coat with the hot oil in the dish, be careful with the oil splatter, and season with salt. Roast for about 25-30 minutes, turning every 10 minutes or so to get a nice brown color on all sides. The recipe calls for 60-70 minutes total cooking time, but that’s for 6lbs of potatoes. You’ll need to scale the cooking time accordingly with the amount of potatoes used.
The potatoes are now a nice golden brown, and I left then in the oven, with the oven turned off, to keep warm while I make the chicken.
The chicken Dijon recipe requires 4 breasts totally ~1.5lbs, but with the monster chicken we are getting nowadays, I was only able to find chicken breasts small enough in the organic section. You can use larger chicken breasts, but make sure you either cut them into smaller pieces, or adjust the browning time accordingly.
Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper, then brown them in a large pot with a few tablespoonful of olive oil, on medium heat.
This will take about 10 minutes total, and your chicken will not be cooked thoroughly yet. Remove the chicken from the pot and set aside. Sauté chopped leeks and onions in the same pot until tender.
The leeks and onions will be cooked into the browned bits of chicken on the bottom of the pot.
Deglaze the pot with the white wine and the chicken stock, and stir in the Dijon mustard and fresh thyme leaves.
Return the chicken back into the pot and simmer over low medium heat until the chicken is cooked through.
Remove the chicken to a plate and keep warm while finishing the sauce. Bring the sauce in the pot to a boil and cook until it thickens to a gravy like consistency.
It took me about 15-20 minutes to get there, but I also was afraid of burning the sauce accidentally as I was checking on the potatoes, I did not have the heat up too high. Once the sauce is properly thick, whisk in the butter and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Spoon the sauce over the chicken and add additional thyme leaves if you’d like.
The chicken didn’t quite look like the photo from the recipe, but it was delicious. The potatoes however looked exactly like they were in the photo from the recipe, and they were crispy on the outside, and creamy on the inside.
I made a green salad with stuff I had the kitchen: arugula, spinach, apples, and manchego cheese. The dressing was a simple mix of minced shallot, apple cider vinegar, honey, and olive oil.