This elegant dish is so easy to make, it's almost criminal. But luckily, I don't think anyone will get in trouble just for making really special chicken fit for anything from a weeknight meal to a dinner party -- even if it does only take a half an hour.
The first trick is to brown the chicken in a mix of butter and oil. This gives you the best combination of flavor and browning for your chicken.
If the breasts are slightly thick (which they probably will be), they won't cook all the way through at this point. That is a good thing! Place them on a baking sheet and let them gently finish cooking in the oven while you make the sauce.
For that sauce, just add some wine to the skillet and let it reduce by half. Don't worry about exact measurements here, so just eyeball it. Most of the alcohol evaporates at this point and just leaves flavor and acidity behind.
Next, add some cream to the pan. Don't skimp and try to use half and half. You need the fat in the cream to keep the sauce smooth.
Last but not least, stir in the mustard, capers and parsley. Spoon this over your (now finished) chicken, and serve!
Oh, and try not to lick the plate
Chicken Breasts With Mustard Cream Sauce
- 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts (about 1 1/2 pounds total)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 tablespoons oil
- 1 cup white wine
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 rounded teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 3 tablespoons capers, rinsed well
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
Heat the oven:
to 350F. Place a baking sheet near the stove, ready for the chicken.
Prepare the chicken:
Season the chicken breasts on both sides with salt and pepper.
Pour the flour onto a large plate and dredge the chicken breasts until well coated. Shake off the excess.
Brown the chicken:
In a large skillet over medium high-heat, heat the butter and oil. When the butter has melted and looks foamy, add the chicken. (Work in batches if your pan isn't big enough so that you don't crowd the pan.)
Brown the chicken for 3 minutes per side, or until golden.
Finish the chicken in the oven:
Transfer the chicken to the baking sheet and place in the oven for 5 minutes (longer if the chicken breasts are thick), or until a thermometer inserted into the thickest part of a breast registers 165 degrees.
If the chicken is done before the sauce, transfer it to a serving platter and tent it loosely with foil to keep warm.
Make the sauce:
While the chicken finishes cooking, return the skillet to medium heat and add the wine. Be careful since the oil in the pan will sputter a little when you add the wine. Cook for 5 minutes, or until the wine is reduced by about half.
Add the cream and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes, or until the sauce coats the back of a spoon.
Stir in the mustard, capers and parsley, reserving a little parsley for sprinkling over top. Taste and add more salt and pepper, if you like.
Serve the chicken:
Place each chicken breast on a plate, drizzle with the sauce, and sprinkle with the remaining parsley.