Martini: “On that day we looked for the snake, you said you wanted there to be a wedding here. And you said… you wanted there to be a family here”.
Frances: “You’re right…I got my wish”.
PHOTO BY Jennifer Pedraza Richardson – Siena, Tuscany
Whenever I read a book or watch a movie that transports me to an entirely different reality, I feel compelled to go there in person. I’ve done this many times, travelling to Forks Washington to be at La Push (Twilight). So it seemed completely obvious that when I was in Tuscany, I’d go to Cortona and visit Bramasole, the setting for one of my favourite movies Under The Tuscan Sun. Luckily, both the town and the house were exactly as I’d envisioned them and since being there, the dream of having a home anywhere in Tuscany would suffice. But you know the saying: “if you can’t live in Tuscany then cook like you do” (that’s not really a saying, I just made that up). For this weeks menu, I created an entire trip through Italy. Yesterday I did fresh sage and butter Tortellini with prociutto wrapped melon. Later in the week, Florentine style steak with fresh mozzarella Caprese Salad. Tonight we’re making this delicious creamy Tuscan Chicken which I’ve served with crispy smashed potatoes and an Italian Artichoke Salad (recipe HERE)
Creamy Tuscan Chicken
- 6 chicken thighs skin on (or 4 chicken breasts)
- 1 large egg
- 3 Tbsp plain all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp freshly ground white or black pepper
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp dried thyme
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp garlic salt
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion – peeled and sliced
- 2 cloves garlic – peeled and minced
- ½ tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 cup of sun dried tomatoes in oil.
- 1 red bell pepper – de-seeded and sliced
- 1 Tbsp tomato paste
- ⅓ cup (90ml) white wine
- 1 cup (240ml) chicken stock
- pinch of salt and pepper
- ⅓ cup (90ml) double (heavy) cream (I used half & half)
- ½ cup (50g) parmesan cheese – grated
- 3 packed cups (90g) fresh baby spinach
- 1 Tbsp chopped parsley
- Preheat the oven to 160C/320F.
- Whisk the egg lightly in a shallow bowl.
- In a separate shallow bowl, mix together the flour, salt, pepper, oregano, thyme, paprika and garlic salt.
- Heat 2 Tbsp of the olive oil in a large frying pan (skillet) on a medium-to-high heat.
- Dip the chicken in the egg, then dredge in the flour mixture.
- Place the chicken in the pan and fry on both sides until golden (about 5 mins on each side)
- Take the chicken out of the pan and place on a tray in the oven for 10-15 minutes to finish cooking whilst you make the sauce.
- Add the oil to the same pan and heat on a medium heat.
- Add the onion and cook for 3-4 minutes until they start to soften.
- Add the garlic, oregano, paprika, sun dried tomatoes, red pepper and tomato puree. Cook for 2 minutes, moving around the pan with a spatula.
- Next pour in the wine and allow to bubble for 2 minutes
- Now add the chicken stock, salt and pepper. Bring the boil, then simmer for 5 minutes.
- Add the cream, parmesan and the spinach to the sauce and stir and cook for a couple of minutes until the spinach wilts.
- Remove the chicken from the oven. Check it’s done (insert a knife into the fattest piece of one of the chicken – it should no longer be pink) and place in the pan with the sauce and cook for another couple of minutes.
- Serve topped with a sprinkling of fresh parsley. Tastes great with pasta, rice or potatoes.
PHOTO BY Jennifer Pedraza Richardson – Visiting Bramasole, The home of the author of Under The Tuscan Sun Frances Mayes
As always, thank you so much for joining me. I hope you will try and enjoy this recipe.
Fino alla prossima volta! (Until next time)