Quitting A Chicken Marsala Habit

First, allow me to confess that I love chicken marsala. If I see it on a menu at a restaurant I feel compelled to order it, even if there are other and seemingly better options. Worse, it often occurs in the kinds of places where one should never order chicken marsala, like that airport where the dish definitely came from a vacuum packed NASA or Army-type ration meal… Second confession, I’ve never attempted to make chicken marsala at home. It would be too devastating if I failed miserably as my taste buds have long ago decided exactly what a chicken marsala should taste like.

Also, chicken marsala is a heavy dish, especially restaurant style, and is laden with butter, oil, flour, wine, and probably sherry. So this dish is like chicken marsala-light. It has the essence of the dish–mushrooms, chicken, wine–but is a lighter, different dish all on its own. It doesn’t quite taste exactly like a chicken marsala, but it’s close enough to fool me into thinking that I’ve quelled that craving for the time being.

Chicken with Mushroom Pasta
–1/2 cup dry bowtie or penne pasta
–2 cloves garlic, sliced into thin intact pieces
–1 cup sliced button mushrooms
–2 TBSP butter
–4 boneless, skinless chicken breast tenders
–3 TBSP cup flour, seasoned with garlic salt & fresh black pepper
–1 egg, beaten
–cooking spray
–1 shallot, diced fine or minced
–1 cup dry white wine, divided
–2 cups chicken broth, divided
–1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

Cook the pasta omitting any oil.

In a medium skillet, sauté the mushrooms and garlic slices in the butter over medium heat until soft and tender.

While the mushrooms and pasta cook, dredge the chicken alternately in the egg and flour until evenly coated. In a cooking spray-coated medium skillet on medium to medium-high heat, cook the chicken tenders for 4-5 minutes on each side. Add 1/2 cup of the wine and 1 cup of the chicken broth and allow the sauce to boil and reduce. Set the chicken aside and pour any remaining sauce over the top of the chicken.

Spray the same skillet the chicken was cooked in with a little more cooking spray. Add the shallots and sauté until browned, stirring regularly. Add the remaining wine to the skillet. Use a wooden spoon to scrape up any bits before adding the rest of the chicken broth. Allow the sauce to reduce a little so that it is less liquid but not so much that it is too thick.

Drain the pasta and return it to the pot. Pour the mushrooms into the pot and add the tomatoes. Pour the sauce into the pot and stir to combine.  Plate the pasta and then add 2 chicken tenders to each plate. Drizzle any remaining sauce onto the chicken and serve. Garnish with fresh parsley and 1 oz. of grated Parmesan, if desired.

Dammit Jim, I’m a cook, not a doctor…
Time: 25 minutes
Serves: 2
Calories: 607 per serving

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