Thursday, February 9, 2012

Chicken with Meyer Lemon Sauce

It's the time of year that Meyer lemons make an appearance in our grocery stores--a most welcome appearance.  To my California friends who complain about lemons littering their lawns and falling into their pools,  I say "send me some lemons and I'll send you some snow"!!

According to Wikipedia, the beautiful smoother skinned Meyer lemons are native to China where they are grown in pots or as ornamental trees.  They are a cross between a lemon and a mandarin orange.  The fruit was introduced into the United States in 1908 by agricultural explorer (what a great job that would be) Frank Nicholas Meyer.  Mr. Meyer was an employee of the United States Agriculture Department.  The lemons were pretty much California's delicious little secret until Alice Waters featured them at Chez Panisse.  Their popularity grew when Martha Stewart featured them in her recipes.  Thanks Frank, Alice and Martha!!

Sunshine in a bowl.

Chicken with Meyer Lemon Sauce inspired by a recipe from Jan Williams

3 Tbsp flour
4 chicken breast halves, boned and skinned
5 fat cloves of garlic
1/3 cup parsley, chopped
1 Tbsp grated Meyer lemon zest
2 Tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper
3/4 cup chicken stock
1/2 cup Meyer lemon juice
1/2 cup of white wine

1.  Lightly coat the chicken breasts with the flour, shaking off the excess.  Finely chop three of the garlic cloves and set aside.  Finely mince the remaining two cloves of garlic and mix with the grated lemon zest and the chopped parsley.  Set aside for topping the finished dish.
2.  In a frying pan, heat the olive oil.  Add the chicken breasts and saute, turning once, until lightly browned.  About three minutes per side.  Season with salt and pepper and transfer to a platter.  Set aside.
3.  You should have about a tablespoon of fat left in the pan.  Any more, pour off.  Add the chopped garlic to the pan and stir until softened, about 30 seconds.  Add the stock, lemon juice and wine and stir to deglaze the pan.  Bring to a boil and cook until slightly reduced--about five minutes.
4.  Return the chicken to the pan, reduce the heat to medium and cook until the juices run clear, approximately another ten minutes.  Transfer to a warm serving platter and cover.
5.  Raise the heat to high and reduce the sauce to about 1/3 cup--about five minutes.   To serve, plate the chicken and pour the sauce over.  Top with the parsley/lemon/garlic mixture.