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Chicken With Morel Mushrooms

Supremes de Volaille Farcies aux Morilles

chicken with morelsChicken With Morels

Chicken with Morels is a wonderfully tasty dish and although dried Morels are expensive, a little will go a long way.

What are morels? They are fungi just like mushrooms only they are expensive! But you only need a little. You can buy the dried morels at Amazon if you can't find any locally.

I tend to use shiitake mushrooms (as in the photo here) or oyster mushrooms when I cannot get morels. So your 'chicken with morels' will be just as good and the results are fabulous.

Ingredients (For 4 people)

4 skinless chicken breasts

6 shallots, thinly sliced

4 tablespoons butter

3/4 cup sparkling dry wine or champagne

3 tablespoons brandy

1½ oz dried morel mushrooms

4 oz button mushrooms thinly sliced

3/4cup thick cream

1/4 teaspoon dried thyme

1 cup chicken stock

Salt and ground black pepper

1 tablespoon olive oil

Method

Rinse the morels under running water in a strainer

Place them in a heavy bottomed pan with the stock and bring to the boil

Remove from the heat and leave to stand for about 1 hour

Strain the morels through a fine sieve and keep the liquid

Slice the morels but keep a few whole ones aside for later

Melt half the butter in a heavy bottomed pan and cook the shallots until they are soft but not browned

Now add the morrels and the button mushrooms and cook for 3 minutes, stirring as you go

Season at this stage and add the brandy and 1/3 of the cream

Reduce the heat and simmer until all the liquid has evaporated

Remove this mixture from the pan and keep aside until cool

Prepare the chicken breasts by making a pocket in each one - cut a slit along the thick edge but do not cut all the way through

Fill each of the chicken breasts with some of the morel mixture and close the slit - use a small toothpick if necessary

Now melt the remaining butter along with the olive oil (this prevents the butter from burning) and cook each of the chicken breasts for about 10 minutes until golden brown on each side

Arrange the chicken breasts on a warm plate and set aside

Add the wine or champagne to the pan and boil, reducing it to half.

Add the strained morel cooking liquid and boil again and reduce by half

Add the remaining cream and cook the sauce until it thickens

Taste the sauce at this stage and adjust the seasoning if necessary

Return the chicken to the pan with any juices, along with the whole morels and simmer them for a few minutes

And there you have it – chicken with morels – a thoroughly beautiful meal made in just a few minutes.

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