Look for bottled roasted chestnuts at gourmet and specialty markets. Garnish with fresh tarragon sprigs.
8 (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
2 cups sliced mushrooms
1 cup frozen pearl onions
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 cup sweet vermouth
1 cup peeled roasted chestnuts
1 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 teaspoon chopped fresh tarragon
1/4 cup dried cranberries
How to Make It
Preheat oven to 350°.
Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Sprinkle chicken with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Add half of chicken to pan, and cook 2 minutes on each side or until lightly browned. Place on a jelly-roll pan coated with cooking spray. Repeat procedure with remaining chicken. Bake at 350° for 25 minutes or until chicken is done.
Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add mushrooms, onions, and garlic to pan. Sprinkle flour over the mushroom mixture, and cook for 2 minutes or until flour is lightly browned, stirring constantly. Add 1 cup vermouth to pan, scraping pan to loosen browned bits, and boil for 30 seconds. Add chestnuts, broth, parsley, tarragon, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, and remaining 1/4 teaspoon pepper; return to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer until sauce is reduced to 2 cups (about 10 minutes). Add cranberries to pan, and cook for 2 minutes.
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I'm so sad to have finally tried a recipe that I wouldn't make again! I read the reviews from other chefs, and IF the chicken had been browned in a sauce pan and baked in the sauce it might have been a better overall flavor, the way that Michelle did. The way the recipe has it cooked didn't allow the chicken didn't take on much flavor from the sauce or other ingredients. It ended up being a bland piece of chicken in a semi-interesting sauce. We made it with all the ingredients; the chestnuts I had hoped would add texture, but I could have done without them. I did not care for their flavor or texture in the dish. The onions, cranberries and mushrooms are all favorite flavors of my family, but fell flat with the sauce. With so many great chicken recipes out there, this one doesn't shine at all. My family of foodies usually raves over CL recipes, but after one bite our faces all fell flat.
Because it was easy, if you're curious and want to try it, I say you should find out for yourselves...but if you want to save about $6, skip the nuts; you won't miss them. Dry vermouth would be just as good if that's what you have on hand...or you can use the remaining sweet vermouth in a Manhattan!
I wasn't sure about the combination of ingredients here, but it the finished dish came out wonderful. I did omit the pearl onions and used a finely chopped shallot however. I also changed the prep. Instead of baking the chicken by itself, I browned it and placed it in a casserole dish. After I made the sauce, I poured it over and then put all of it in the over at 375 to braise the chicken and keep it moist. It came out perfect that way. I had never had a chestnut before. I liked them and they were fun to roast and peel.
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