Monday, June 15, 2015

Chicken Marango

Chicken Marango is one of those old school French dishes that you don't see much anymore, which is a shame, because it's a tasty French dish that departs from the norm by using some predominately Italian ingredients.

The story goes that the dish was invented by Napoleon's chef after the battle of Marango,  Being as the army was in Italy, and were light on provisions, local ingredients were sourced and thus, Chicken Marango was born.  Napoleon was said to have loved it and ate it before (or was it after) every subsequent battle.

Whether this story is true or not is lost in the mists of time, but one thing that is certain is that this recipe has changed over the years, with more modern recipes omitting certain ingredients like eggs and crayfish, and adding mushrooms and red wine.  My version does this as well.  Also, cutting up a whole chicken and using all the various pieces would be more traditional (and perhaps provide a richer, more flavorful dish, with the addition of the dark meat) but tonight it is just the two of us, so I've just done a couple of breasts Marango style.  Sub whatever chicken parts you like.

Chicken Marango

2 Chicken Breasts (or Chicken Parts of your Choice)
3-4  Tablespoons Olive Oil
1/3 Cup Flour
Salt and Pepper
1 Large Yellow Onion, Diced
2 Cups Chicken Stock
5-6 Garlic Cloves, Minced
1 Cup (or so) White Wine
1 Can (14 Oz) Beef Consommé
1 Can (28 Oz) Crushed Tomatoes
6 Oz Mushrooms (White, Cremini or Similar) Sliced
3-4 Oz Large Green Olives
1 Bouquet Garni (Herb Bouquet of Parsley, Rosemary, Thyme and Bay Leaves)

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet.  Dredge the chicken pieces and flour and then season them with salt and pepper.  Sauté the chicken until golden brown but note all the way cooked through.

Set aside and keep warm.

Add more olive oil if necessary and then sauté the diced onion until it begins to turn translucent and slightly golden.

Add the minced garlic at this point and sauté another minute or two.

Add the wine and deglaze the pan at this point.

Allow to simmer a few minutes and then add the chicken stock.  When this is warmed through add the beef consommé

and bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer.

Add the sliced mushrooms and allow these to cook through.  Add the bouquet garni at this point.

Add the crushed tomatoes

and bring the liquid back to a simmer.  Return the chicken pieces to the skillet and cook through. Sauce should thicken as the chicken cooks, but if it is not to your liking when the chicken is done, remove them and allow the sauce to continue to cook until thickened.  Remove bouquet garni and discard it.

Serve the chicken with the sauce and the addition of the olives.

Bon Appitit!



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