Chicken Marsala Recipe

A few years back, we were visiting my brother and his wife and they made Chicken Marsala for dinner. Since then, we have found it to be a bit of a welcome change from our typical chicken dishes. Naturally, we have adapted the recipe a little bit to suit our tastes and the seasonings we have on hand. The best part is that it is relatively simple and quick to make, yet looks and tastes like you’ve been slaving over a hot stove all afternoon.

Ingredients:

  • Several pieces of chicken breast
  • Marsala wine
  • 1/4 cup Flour
  • 1/4 cup Panko chips
  • 1/4 cup Bread Crumbs
  • Salt
  • Black Pepper
  • 1/2 cup Butter
  • 1 can Sliced Mushrooms

Directions:

  1. Trim the chicken breasts and pound them flat.
  2. In a gallon food storage bag, mix dry ingredients. I typically use approximately equal parts flour, panko chips, and bread crumbs and then add salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Sprinkle some pepper on the chicken and then add it to the bag. Shake until thoroughly coated.
  4. Melt butter in a frying pan. Use one with a lid – you’ll need it later.
  5. Add chicken to the pan and cook both sides just long enough to get a nice golden color.
  6. Add mushrooms and let them fry up just a little bit.
  7. Add Marsala wine till it covers about half the chicken.
  8. Reduce the heat and cover the pan.
  9. Flip the chicken every 5 minutes.
  10. Continue to cook until the Marsala has reduced and thickened.
  11. Server over pasta and enjoy.

 

You don’t need to add the mushrooms until you add the Marsala wine, but my wife figured that getting them a little fried might keep the texture from turning me off. If you don’t mid the mushrooms a little more soft and squishy, you can add them later.

 

You don’t need to cover the chicken completely with the Marsala wine. If you do, then you might not need to flip the chicken. However, you will have to wait a lot longer for it to reduce. Through trial and error, we have found that half covered reduced down to a nice thickens without having to wait too long. Depending on how you like the sauce you may want to experiment with how much Marsala you use.

 

It’s a little difficult to tell how thick the sauce is from the picture. I’d say it’s about the consistency of a thick  gravy. We served it over a nice wheat spaghetti.  Adding pepper to the chicken before it gets coated with the mix really spices it up a bit. I did even try a few mushrooms although I always made sure to get one with a bite of chicken and maybe some pasta. I never did try any on their own. They weren’t as bad as I thought they could be, but the texture was still a little unpleasant. I probably will try them again. The rest of the Chicken Marsala was delicious.

Chicken and Brown Rice – A Quick Healthy Meal

In today’s busy world, it can be difficult to find time to make a good, healthy meal. Far too often, we have found it easier to resort to fast food for times sake and ease of cleanup. That’s a pretty unhealthy trade-off. Worse yet, it’s one you don’t need to make. And here’s why.

Par-boiled chicken and brown rice.

Boil up several pieces of chicken and a pot of brown rice. I usually try to do this over the weekend when I have more time since this is the only part that really requires any serious prep time. Then I bag up them both separately and stick them in the fridge. The chicken will keep for several days so you don’t need to worry about having chicken too many nights in a row.

There are so many ways you can now prepare a quick, healthy meal from the chicken and rice. This is the one I do most often.

When you get home from work, simply take out some chicken and cut it up into bite size pieces and toss it in a skillet. Then add brown rice. Usually, I figure a half chicken breast and one cup of rice per person, but you can pretty much use as much or as little as you like. Now add a vegetable. I generally go with corn, peas, or broccoli – or some combination of them. Next pour some soy sauce into the mix and add some black pepper to taste. Don’t overdo it on the soy sauce or it gets very salty. On occasion, I will add a small amount of chili powder to the mix as well. It only takes about 15-20 minutes from the time I pull things out of the fridge until I have a plate of delicious food sitting in front of me.

 

I’ll discuss some of the other ways you can use the par-boiled chicken and brown rice to make a quick healthy meal at another time. For now, you can always change up the vegetable and seasonings to make the dish fresh so you don’t get bored with it.

Honey Mint Glazed Chicken Recipe

Here’s a recipe I found on www.simplyrecipes.com that I thought would fit right in with my sweet tooth and love of mint. It didn’t quite turn out like I had hoped.

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 4-5 pound chicken, cut into parts
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 2-3 Tbsp water
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh mint or 2 Tbsp dried mint

Directions:

  1. Place chicken pieces in a bowl.
  2. Mix vinegar with olive oil and pour over chicken pieces. Turn chicken pieces so that all are coated with the simple marinade.
  3. Let marinate for 30 minutes to an hour.
  4. In a small bowl mix honey, mint, and just enough water for a good basting consistency. Set aside for glazing the chicken.
  5. Prepare grill for medium high heat.
  6. Remove chicken pieces from marinade. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper.
  7. Place chicken pieces on the hot grill, skin side up.
  8. Cook for approximately 30-40 minutes, covered, turning every 7 or 8 minutes.
  9. For the last 5-10 minutes of cooking, baste all sides with the honey mint mixture. The chicken is done when the juices run clear not pink when a knife tip is inserted into both the chicken breast and thigh, about 165°F for the breast and 180°F for the thigh.

via Honey Mint Glazed Chicken Recipe | Simply Recipes.

So where did I go wrong? Well, I think I did several things wrong. First, I mixed all the ingredients together in a Zip-Lock bag rather than just mixing the oil and vinegar and mixing the rest separately to glaze it, The second mistake I made was forgetting that I had leftover meatloaf in the fridge. My wife makes it up special for me with just bread crumbs and egg. When she reminded me it was there, I had already put the chicken in the marinade. I figured it would be fine, so I just stuck the bag in the fridge for the night. I was grilling Southwestern chicken the following night so I just tossed in on the other side of the grill. Well, when my wife heard that I had been marinating chicken in a vinegar mix overnight she mentioned that she had heard that was a bad idea and the chicken doesn’t marinate the same as beef. Well, she was right. The chicken came out kind of rubbery and not at all juicy even though it was on the grill for the same amount of time the Southwestern chicken was. I also attempted to make this into a sandwich like the others were doing with the Southwestern chicken. The bread and cheese were probably the only redeeming qualities.

Although I will call this a failure, since it was due to my screwing it up, I’m going to have to try this one again sometime. I’m not going to call this “food I like”, “food I dislike”, or even “food I tolerate” because I could not accurately judge it.

When you try this recipe, make sure you follow the directions properly.

Southwestern Grilled Chicken Recipe

I’ve mentioned before that when dealing with fussy eaters, it is good to build on things they like. Since I liked the way the Southwestern Tilapia came out the other day, I figured the same basic seasoning would work for chicken. I didn’t use as much salt as I did with the Tilapia, but I did use more red pepper and chili powder (not that I actually measured them).

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon red pepper
  • 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • Chicken breasts

Instructions:

  1. Mix dry ingredients in a Glad or Ziplock bag.
  2. Add olive oil to the bag and mix thoroughly.
  3. Add Chicken to the bag and shake until evenly coated.
  4. Put aluminum foil on the grill and cook on medium-high heat for about 10 minutes (actual time may vary based on your grill so just cook until done).

The chicken wasn’t nearly as salty as the Tilapia but it was a bit hotter spice-wise due to the increase in red pepper and chili powder. I think I am taking a liking to red pepper now. Who would have thought?

Have you discovered any new ingredients that you really like now?

My Famous Chicken Nuggets

My wife and I decided to start our Memorial Day weekend with some serious comfort food. That means mixing up a batch of my famous chicken nuggets. I’ve come a long way when it comes to chicken.

Soon after I met Linda she discovered that my freezer was stocked with nothing but several varieties of Weaver microwavable chicken and Quaker Steak-ums. She put and end to that and showed me how to prepare fresh chicken several ways including nuggets. I took what she showed me and ran with it. Now she prefers mine to hers. So do our 3 kids. So do many of their friends. They are always a hit at our Superbowl parties.

  • Cut the chicken into strips or small bite sized pieces. There’s really no wrong way to cut them.
  • Grab a gallon Ziplock bag and add around a half cup of flour (I don’t measure).
  • Add around and half cup bread crumbs (again I don’t measure).
  • Now add around half a cup of panko chips (if you haven’t figured it out by now, I don’t measure this either).
  • Add a bunch of ground pepper – maybe 3 or 4 tablespoons if I had to guess.
  • Add Mortons Nature’s Seasons – maybe another 3 tablespoons.
  • Add a dash or two of cinnamon. It’s one of my favorite ingredients.
  • Add a dash or two of chili powder to give it some kick.
  • Shake the bag until the mix is even. Add more pepper if you can’t make it out in the mix.
  • Sprinkle a little Nature’s Seasons over the chicken and then add one piece at a time to the bag.
  • Shake well and keep adding chicken.
  • Heat the oil
  • Add chicken and cook until a nice golden brown.

I’ve found that you can use wheat bread crumbs instead, but the chicken comes out a little darker color. You’ll have to play around with the amounts of each ingredient until you find something that works for you. I do it all by eye. When the mix looks right, I toss the chicken in. Don’t be afraid to try adding something else to the mix. That’ show I came up with the cinnamon and chili powder.

Let me know how your chicken came out and if you found any other ingredients that work well in the mix.

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