Wednesday Lemon Chicken

During the warm months, on the sunny days, I change into a swimsuit and dash to Barrington Beach after work.  Barrington Beach has come a long way since my children were little.  I would let the kids paddle but not expose any mucus membranes to the water.  Then a few years ago the City of East Providence replaced their sewage treatment plant, and now the water of Narragansett Bay at Barrington Beach is lovely, clean, and clear.  There is no red tide, unlike at Newport Beaches, and unlike those lovely white sand spots, at Barrington I can be sitting in my beach chair 10 minutes after leaving my desk chair.

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My friend Barb joins me at the beach most days, and those are the best.  We chat, we swim, we snack, we sip.  We get a lot of sun and have a lot of laughs and a few shared secrets.  When I’m there by myself, I swim, dry off, warm up in the sun, and go home.  Still nice, but not as good.

When Chuck is traveling, I feel a little bit guilty leaving Luna the Shepherd-Poodle home alone while I’m swimming and sunning, so I dash home and take her for a walk.  When Chuck is home, I feel a little bit guilty that I’m playing in the water and sun while he’s working, so I dash home and make dinner.  Tonight I made lemon chicken, brown rice, and roasted zucchini.

My lemon chicken is adapted from Babs Deacon’s recipe, which is outstanding.  Mine is good too, although I’m a bit more haphazard about it.  Sometimes I add mushrooms.  Tonight I used dry vermouth instead of wine.  It’s very forgiving.

Lemon Chicken

  • 1 lb. chicken or turkey tenderloins or tenders (I’ve also used veal)
  • 1 small sweet onion, chopped
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • salt & pepper and other seasonings to taste (I use Tony Chachere’s Creole)
  • olive oil
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 cup unsalted chicken stock
  • 1 Knorr chicken base, low sodium

Mix flour and seasonings.  Dredge chicken, then set aside.  Heat heavy saute pan over medium heat, then add enough olive oil to cover the bottom.  Add onion, then saute until translucent.  Remove from pan, then top off the olive oil to again cover the bottom of the pan.  Place a few dredged pieces of chicken in the pan, without crowding.  Leave untouched until golden brown on the bottom (about 6 minutes?), then turn over.  Cook until browned, then remove to a plate.  Cook all the chicken this way, adding a bit more olive oil as needed, removing chicken when browned.  Without lowering the heat, pour wine into pan and scrape up any browned bits, whisking well.  Add lemon juice, stock, and chicken base, whisking well.  Reduce heat a bit, and let the mixture cook down until about 1/3 – 1/2 reduced.  Turn off the heat, and add a few tablespoons of cold butter, whisking well.  Then return pan to a low heat, add the onions and chicken back in, and simmer for a few minutes.  Serve over rice, noodles, or mashed potatoes.

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