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Chicken With Chanterelle Mushrooms And Penne Pasta

My wife came back from a trip to Los Angeles (where our son and grandson live) with a bagful of groceries. Browsing around a farmer’s market, she saw what looked to her like really good mushrooms. Chanterelles. She thought I could make something with them, but not exactly what. A chance to improvise! I knew that this would require using only what was already around the house. Except for the chicken, which I sneaked out to buy.

This contains a lot of butter, but you could cut back the quantity or substitute olive oil if you like. If you can’t get chanterelles (and they’re not exactly everywhere all the time), use whatever interesting mushrooms you can buy fresh.

Chicken with mushrooms and pasta

  • 8 chicken “tenders” or 3 large chicken breasts, each cut into three pieces
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 tsp. salt-free Creole seasoning
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 stick butter
  • 2/3 cup dry white wine
  • 1 Tbs. lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 tsp. dried tarragon
  • 1/4 tsp. dried sage
  • 6 oz. chanterelle mushrooms (or other interesting wild mushrooms), sliced
  • 1/2 lb. cooked penne pasta
  • 1/4 cup water from the pasta pot

1. inside a food storage bag, pound out the chicken tenders or pieces to about double their original size. Cut the pounded pieces into smaller pieces about two inches square. Blend the flour, Creole, seasoning, and salt, and dust the chicken pieces lightly.

2. Heat 2 Tbs. of butter in a heavy skillet over medium-high heat until it bubbles. Brown the chicken in the butter for about a minute per side. Remove the chicken and keep warm in a 175-degree oven.

3. Add the white wine, lemon juice, Worcestershire, tarragon and sage to the pan. Whisk to dissolve the crusty bits that have stuck to the pan and the remaining butter. Bring to a boil and reduce by about a third.

4. Add the chanterelles and cook until tender. Remove the skillet from the heat and whisk in the remaining butter until the sauce is creamy-looking. Taste the sauce and add salt and pepper as needed.

5. Return the chicken to the pan and heat through, until the sauce soaks into the chicken a bit. Add the pasta to the pan and toss to coat. If there’s not quite enough sauce, stir in some water from the pasta pot. Serve in pre-warmed soup plates.

Serves four.

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