LIZZIE’S DREAMY CREAMY CHICKEN

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There I was one evening, gazing dolefully at a pack of four chicken breasts and wondering what on earth I was going to make for dinner, when Lizzie’s Chicken popped into my head.

To save myself trawling through my hand-written cookery notebook, I looked up Eating for Ireland and was amazed to discover that I’d kept this particular jewel from you… Well, NO MORE! This is your lucky day :)

This recipe is an absolute treat for a mid-week dinner, and is definitely suitable for a dinner party  with friends. I’ve always called it Lizzie’s Chicken, but it’s actual name is Poulet a la Forestiere, which sounds waaay posher!

There are several possible variations, as I started to make it one day and discovered I’d no white wine left, so used red, and a new flavour combination was born – see the NOTES at the bottom of the page.

The eponymous Lizzie was a lady who ran a cookery class in Belfast for a while; my friend Anne won tickets to a demonstration, and kindly invited me along . That was ages ago now, but Anne and I both make this recipe regularly. It’s a One-Pot-Wonder, by the way, as if you weren’t sold already!

Give it a lash and let me know how you get on…

EQUIPMENT:

  • Measuring jug
  • large, high-sided frying pan.

INGREDIENTS:  This recipe will feed 4-6 people..

  • 1 skinless chicken breast per person
  • 1 tablespoon of plain flour
  • salt and pepper
  • Tablespoon of oil, and  a knob of butter
  • 175 ml hot chicken stock
  • decent sized glass of white wine
  • 200g chestnut mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 6-8 whole sundried tomatoes, from a jar, cut in two
  • squeeze of lemon juice* – see notes
  • half a tub of crème fraiche

METHOD:

  • Put the flour, salt and pepper in to a bowl, then add the chicken breasts and turn them over and over, until each piece is well covered with flour
  • Heat the pan, add the oil and butter and when it’s melted and sizzling, gently add each chicken breast –  serving side down  – in a single layer.
  • Leave the chicken for about 8-10 minutes at a medium heat until it develops some colour, then turn it over.
  • Immediately add the stock and wine, and allow it to bubble up

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  • Reduce the heat a little, then add the mushrooms and sun-dried tomatoes
  • Now just leave it simmering gently for about 15-20 minutes, moving the mushrooms about occasionally, but leaving the chicken where it is. Don’t worry that the stock, etc. seems to evaporate, it will be fine.
  • Squeeze over the lemon juice* see NOTES
  • When the chicken is cooked (the 20 minutes gentle cooking will ensure that it’s done) add the crème fraiche and stir it in to make the lovely café-au-lait coloured  sauce.

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I’ve served this with new potatoes, garlicy French beans, and a sprinkle of fresh parsley but as usual, I’ll leave the details to you.. My husband likes this with Champ – (that magical Northern Irish mashed potato dish)  :)  I also love it served with my easy peasy Gratin potatoes:

http://eatingforireland.com/recipe/my-easy-peasy-potato-gratin-or-to-give-it-its-official-title-scalloped-cream-potatoes-with-rosemary-and-garlic/

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NOTES:

  1. *Literally a squeeze of lemon juice is enough – any more than that makes it too bitter.
  2. The original recipe called for tarragon and sun-dried tomatoes. I don’t like tarragon, but if you do, please feel free to use it
  3. The red wine option – again, mushrooms and sun-dried tomatoes, but with red wine and fresh basil, garnished with basil to serve.
  4. Another one would be fried-off chorizo, and a spoonful of smoked paprika, for a smokier, more wintery flavour.
  5. Also, once when I had no crème fraiche (well I had, but it was out of date) I used a couple of tablespoons of whipping cream with an added squeeze of lemon juice to sour it.
About

I started writing down recipes in an old copybook when I was about 16. With 6 children at home, my Mother was always glad of a hand in the kitchen, and really allowed us to experiment - as long as we washed up afterwards, and left the kitchen immaculate! Having a tidy kitchen has followed me through my life, as has the habit of writing down my favourite recipes; except that these days I write them for my website, and add photographs when I can. The website really started when it occurred to me that my daughter might like to have these recipes when I've forgotten them. In my early days of cooking for family and friends, I used to phone my Mum all the time to ask her for the recipe for some of our favourite family dinners. She rarely had a recipe to hand - I think, like me, she made a lot of it up as she went along.. So welcome to Eating for Ireland - these are the recipes that my friends and family having been eating these past 40 years.. yes, I truly am ancient! They are tried and tested, and have worked for me for all that time - I have updated them as new ingredients became available - I really hope you'll find something that you can make into a family favourite of your own. You don't have to tell anyone where you found these great new dishes that you're serving up - it can be our little secret, but I'd really love it if you could give me a sneaky 'follow' on Facebook and Instagram.. So off you go - have a good rummage around, you're bound to find something new! My sincere thanks to all of you who have found a recipe that you liked and dropped me a line to tell me - I really do love to hear from you! Happy Cooking! Becks xx

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