Evelyn Chartres Author

Chicken Piccata

Chicken piccata is said to be nothing more than chicken breast cutlets, dredged in flour, browned then served with a sauce of butter, lemon juice, capers and stock.

While this recipe fits the definition, the sauce and chicken preparation have been separated. I found that making the sauce after you cook the chicken has varied results.

Ingredients

  • ⅓ cup (80 g) of all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) of salt
  • ½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) of pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon (1.25 ml) of lemon pepper
  • 1 pound (450 g) of chicken breasts
  • 2 teaspoons (10 ml) of olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) of butter
  • 2 cloves (5-10 mg) of garlic
  • ¾ cup (180 ml) of chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) of lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) of Italian seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon (5 ml) of capers

Preparation

  1. In a bag or container, mix flour less 1 tablespoon (15 ml), salt, pepper and lemon pepper.
  2. Cut chicken breasts in half, place one piece at a time into bag, shake to cover.
  3. In an oiled medium pan on medium heat.  Cook chicken on all sides until meat is no longer pink in the center.  Set aside, keep warm using tin foil.
  4. Scrape up some brown bits from the pan and set aside.
  5. In a small saucepan, add oil and butter. Melt butter on medium heat.
  6. Add garlic and sauté for a minute.
  7. Add flour and stir until you have a consistent mix.
  8. Add chicken broth, brown bits, lemon juice and Italian seasoning. Continue heating and stir until sauce thickens.
  9. Add in capers and wait until they are heated through.
  10. Serve chicken covered with sauce.  Makes four portions.

Tuscan Sausage

I am not too sure if this recipe has anything to do with dishes served in Tuscany. However, this dish combines Italian sausage, potatoes, mushrooms, peas and pasta sauce to create a ready-to-serve meal in less than an hour.

This recipe can be heavily varied based on the type of pasta sauce used.  I typically opt for a four-cheese or spinach pasta sauce, both variants are crowd pleasers!

Ingredients

  • 1 pound (450 g) of Italian Sausage
  • 1 pound (450 g) of potatoes
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) of garlic butter
  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) of cumin
  • 10 fluid ounces (285 g) of sliced mushrooms
  • 3 ounces (85 g) of diced onions
  • 3 ounces (85 g) of diced red peppers
  • 22 fluid ounces (650 g) of pasta sauce
  • 6 ounces (170 g) of thawed snow peas

Preparation

  1. Cook and slice up the sausage.  I typically use an outdoor grill to enhance the flavour.
  2. Peel and cut the potatoes into ¼ inch cubes (0.6 cm). Rinse then heat in the microwave until the potatoes have begun to soften for approximately 3 minutes (halved).
  3. In a 8.75 inch skillet (22 cm) melt butter on medium heat.  Add sliced mushrooms and cumin. Sauté until mushrooms are a golden brown. When done set aside.
  4. In a well-oiled 3.5 quart (3.3 l) sauté pan, cook onions and red peppers until onions become transparent.
  5. Add potatoes and continue to cook for 2 to 3 minutes.
  6. Add sausage, mushrooms and pasta sausage. Reduce heat to low/medium-low and simmer for 20-30 minutes.
  7. Add snow peas then allow to heat.  Ready to serve.
  8. Optionally place individual portions into a pot of stoneware then cover in mozzarella cheese.  Heat in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes at 350°F (180°C).