Monday, January 13, 2020

Chicken Marsala

  Ok, this is one of those recipes that I've wanted to share for literally YEARS, but I've just never gotten around to it. Well, that is until now! It's one of my all time favorite dishes in the whole wide world, and it comes to us from my sister, Jeanie. Aka, My Jeanie. I'm not even sure where she got the recipe, but like I always say, since she's the one who gave it to me, she's the one who gets the credit.
 Years ago, she used to make it all the time, and honestly, every time I helped her make it, I wanted to eat the entire pan of it. It's just SO flavorful! The bacon, the mushrooms, the garlic, the Marsala, what's not to love? The other thing that is worth noting is that I don't remember seeing tomato paste in other recipes, so that's another thing that sets this one apart from the others. It makes it tangy and it thickens the sauce ever so slightly. YUM. It's easy enough for a weeknight dinner, and it's elegant enough for a date night or a special occasion. And anytime you tell people you made Chicken Marsala, everyone says 'ooooooooh!" because it sounds so impressive. But we won't tell them how simple it is to make! That can be our little secret.
 So thanx, My Jeanie, for always inspiring me to be a better cook and for sharing your heart and soul through food. This will always be a favorite!!

1/2 cup all purpose flour
Salt and pepper
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
3 tbs vegetable oil
3 strips of bacon, finely chopped
8 oz cremini mushrooms, sliced
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 tbs tomato paste
1 1/2 cups sweet Marsala wine
1 1/2 tbs lemon juice, freshly squeezed
3 tbs chilled butter
2 tbs fresh parsley, minced

Place flour in a shallow dish. Place chicken pieces between two pieces of plastic wrap, and gently pound to an even thickness. Season with salt and pepper. Dredge in flour to coat on both sides. Pat off the excess flour.
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the chicken and cook until lightly golden on both sides, about 10 minutes. Remove chicken from plate and set aside.
Add a little more oil to the skillet, add the bacon and mushrooms. Cook until the bacon is crisp and the mushrooms are brown, about 10 minutes. Stir in the garlic and tomato paste. Cook until the tomato paste begins to brown, about a minute. Add the Marsala wine, scraping up any browned bits. Simmer until reduced and slightly thickened. Stir in the lemon juice along with any accumulated juice from the chicken. Turn the heat to low, and whisk in the cold butter, one piece at a time. Adjust seasoning, if needed. Remove from heat, top with parsley. Spoon sauce over chicken and serve.

Use any kind of mushrooms you like. I believe the original recipe used white button mushrooms, but I like cremini mushrooms better, so that's how I roll. I think the original used pancetta instead of bacon, but again, use what you like! You do you!
Be sure to use sweet Marsala instead of dry. That's key!

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