As a long time reader of this publication, it’s such an honor for me to share a bit of my knowledge with you via The Loafer. Officially, I am a Tri-Cities native and wine rep with a local beverage distributor. Unofficially, I am a single 30-something professional, dog mom, travel junkie who is simultaneously building a burgeoning secondary business from the ground up while trying to maintain enough of a healthy diet and gym time to compensate for the obscene amounts of wine I “taste test.” My busy lifestyle, like so many of yours, means it’s highly important that I make mundane tasks like grocery shopping and cooking as quick and efficient as possible. Thank goodness for Tennessee FINALLY passing wine in grocery stores in 2016! We now have a one stop shop for all the essentials for an entire week or an entire meal, depending on how far ahead you’re planning. Not to mention ALL our local grocery stores have a fabulous selection of wines to choose from, ranging from $2.99 to several hundred dollar bottles!
The recipe I’m sharing with you is not only absolutely delicious, but also semi-healthy (it started out healthy… then I added a lot more butter. YOLO.) With the weather finally cooling down I wanted something filling and savory that paired well with my favorite Vinos. It incorporates a crowd pleasing Pinot Grigio into the dish, conveniently leaving plenty to drink with your dinner AND if you prep a little in advance, should only take around 30 minutes. This dish serves 4 people with normal appetites and drinking habits (or one person, twice if your name is Kathie Scalf) and clocks in at only around $30, including the wine! I don’t know of any restaurant in town where you can get an elegant, healthy dinner paired with wine for only $7.50 a head. But if you do, I’m available! Also, you may want to be forewarned, I am of the belief that cooking is an art and baking is a science. I am an artist which means I do not really measure my ingredients a lot. For the sake of this article, I have attempted, but a lot of the spices were based on personal preference and should be adjusted to taste.
The main dish of chicken was divine, dredged in just enough flour, Parmesan cheese and spices to soak up the butter and oil in the pan and cook a golden, delicious brown. Deglazing the pan of chicken drippings and garlic, mushroom and onion with the white wine and chicken broth produced a savory delectable topping that I couldn’t get enough of. However, the piece de resistance of this meal had to be the roasted vegetables. I had to make myself stop eating them. A medley of colorful vegetables, roasted in the oven then tossed in a balsamic honey glaze, it was simple, easy and absolutely mouthwatering. So, I’m sure you’re ready to get to the ‘meat’ of this article (puns intended) and read the recipe already!
Chicken and Mushrooms in Garlic White Wine Sauce
1 1/2lbs of thin sliced chicken breast
OR chicken tenders
3 Tbs butter
3 Tbs olive oil
1/4 C flour
1/8 -1/4 C Parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp salt/pepper (for dredging)
1 tsp Italian seasoning (for dredging)
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1/4 medium onion, thinly sliced
8oz sliced baby Bella mushrooms
1/3 C white wine (Pinot Grigio or Chardonnay works best)
1/2 C chicken broth
More salt and pepper to taste (for seasoning veggies in skillet)
Garnish with chopped fresh parsley
On a plate or bowl, combine flour, Parmesan cheese, salt/pepper and Italian seasoning. Lightly dredge chicken in mixture.
Heat large skillet over medium heat, add 2 tbsp of butter and 2 tbs oil. Place dredged chicken in skillet and cook approx 5 minutes per side, or until skin is golden brown and insides are no longer pink. Remove chicken and set aside.
Add remaining 1 tbsp each of butter and oil. Toss in minced garlic, cooking for only a few seconds until fragrant. Add mushrooms, onion, salt and pepper and stir constantly, as the mushrooms will absorb ALL oil and garlic is quick to burn. Cook around 4-5 minutes until veggies are tender.
Add wine and scrape up drippings from bottom of pan, stirring to combine. When boiling returns, add chicken stock, return to boil and cook
a few more minutes until everything is tender and flavors have married. Return chicken to pan and turn off the heat. Let flavors melt together. Garnish with a sprinkle of copped fresh parsley if desired
Oven Roasted Veggies with Balsamic Honey Glaze
1/2 lb Brussels sprouts, halved
1/2 lb baby carrots
1 lb small red potatoes, quartered
2 large shallots, quartered
3 Tbsp of olive oil
1 tsp sea salt
3/4 tsp black pepper
2 Tbsp balsamic syrup* (recipe below)
1 Tbsp honey
*Balsamic syrup recipe – boil 2/3 C of balsamic vinegar with 1 Tbsp of brown sugar for around 4-5 minutes until thickened. Allow to cool. Can be stored in sealed jar in refrigerator up to 1 month)
Preheat oven to 425. Line a baking sheet with foil and spray with nonstick. In a large bowl, toss all veggies with 2 Tbsp of olive oil, salt and pepper. Spread vegetables evenly onto baking sheet and roast until tender for 30 minutes. Remove from oven, transfer veggies back to large bowl and toss in remaining 1 Tbsp of olive oil, balsamic syrup and honey. Serve and enjoy!
This meal was so filling and tasty. I am a country girl so I have no problem using store brand for most things. I do suggest investing in a good balsamic vinegar and olive oil though. I also got a banging good deal on chicken at the store I went to. Most grocery stores mark down their closely dated meats in early afternoon, so that’s the best time to shop for it if you’re planning on using it that day. For example, I got 1 1/2 lbs of chicken breast for $1.94 that was marked down from almost $7.00! I used Gnarly Head Pinot Grigio for my wine, which is around $10/bottle. I live by the philosophy, “If you wouldn’t drink it, don’t cook with it.” All the Gnarly products are fantastic for the price point and consistently rate between 89-92 pts with Wine Enthusiast Magazine.
I truly hope you all like this meal as much as I did and can enjoy it the way it’s meant to be–in the comfort of home, in your most cozy sweatpants, surrounded by warmth and laughter and plenty of vino. Cheers!