It’s amazing what elegant meals one can serve quickly when one has a well stocked pantry (or liquor cabinet). This is a simple sautéed chicken breast recipe, distinguished by a creamy sauce based on crème de cassis, a lovely sweet dark red liqueur made from blackcurrants. The best quality crème de cassis comes from the Dijon region of France and is used for making the cocktail kir. My father adapted this recipe from one in the reader questions section of a twenty year old Gourmet magazine. It’s based on a recipe for chicken with a Dijon mustard, white wine cream sauce, so if you don’t have access to cassis, you could substitute with a little Dijon mustard. The sauce is delightful; I could see doing something similar with pomegranate molasses or even plum sauce.
Chicken with Creamy Cassis Sauce Recipe
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (about 1 1/4 pounds)
- 1/3 cup flour
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 Tbsp canola oil or grapeseed oil
- 1/3 cup dry white wine
- 1/4 cup crème de cassis (or a teaspoon of Dijon)
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
1 Rinse the chicken breasts and pat dry with paper towels. Dredge them in flour, shake off the excess flour and season with salt and pepper.
2 Heat oil in a large skillet on medium high. Place the chicken breasts in the skillet and cook, turning once, until both sides are golden brown and the chicken is just cooked through, about 10 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a platter, cover with foil to keep warm.
3 Discard excess fat in the skillet. Add the wine and deglaze, scraping up the browned bits. Boil the wine down for half a minute, add the crème de cassis and the cream. Continue to boil down the mixture until it is reduced by a third. Whisk in the butter. Add salt and pepper and spoon over chicken breasts to serve.
Yield: Serves 3 to 4.