Friday, November 6, 2015

Chicken Dijon with Leeks and Wild Mushrooms

Due to its long tradition of mustard making, Dijon is regarded as the mustard capital of the world. However, it was only in the 14th-century that this condiment was officially called 'mustard' when the French Duke of Burgundy granted a coat of arms to the city of Dijon bearing the motto 'Moult Me Tarde,' meaning “much awaits me”, and dijon gained its reputation as being the home of master mustard makers — 'the condiment of kings'. In 1777, Monsieur Grey developed a secret recipe for a mustard made with white wine, and when he formed a partnership with financier Monsieur Poupon, 'Grey Poupon' mustard was born. These days simple French bistro-style dishes made with chicken, Dijon mustard, white wine, and crème fraîche, such as Poulet à la Moutarde or Poulet à la Dijonnaise, signify that the chicken is cooked with Dijon-style mustard. This luscious dish, inspired by a recipe from Delicious Magazine in the UK, combines the refined flavours of this classic French dish with the earthy undertones of wild mushrooms, sliced leeks and splash of French brandy — absolument délicieux.

Chicken breasts brushed with oil and seasoned with salt and pepper, then roasted at 425°F for 25 minutes

Sliced leeks placed in a pan with olive oil over medium-high heat

Cooked for 8 minutes until soft and tender

Sliced wild mushrooms (shiitake, enoki and shimeji) and minced garlic are added and sautéed 2-3 minutes

White wine, chicken stock, brandy, Dijon and fresh thyme are added and mixed well to combine

The mustard emulsifies the sauce as it simmers over low heat

The roast chicken breasts are placed in the sauce and simmered for 15 minutes

Chicken Dijon with Leeks and Wild Mushrooms
Serves 2

2 chicken breasts, bone-in and skin-on
2 tbsp olive oil
8 oz mixed mushrooms, such as shimeji, enoki and shiitake, sliced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 leeks, white and pale-green parts only, rinsed and thinly sliced
1/4 cup dijon mustard
2 tbsp minced fresh thyme, plus thyme leaves/sprigs for garnish
1 1/2 cups white wine
1 tbsp butter
A splash of brandy

Preheat oven to 425°F. Season the chicken breasts with salt and freshly ground black pepper and place on a foil lined baking sheet. Bake for 30-40 minutes until golden brown, then remove from the oven and tent the pan with foil and set aside. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium-high and cook the sliced leeks until tender, about 8 minutes. Add the garlic and sliced mushrooms and sauté about 2-3 minutes. Stir in the wine, brandy, Dijon mustard, and minced thyme and bring to a simmer for 5 minutes. Return the chicken to the pan, skin-side up. Cover and simmer over medium-low until the chicken is cooked through, about 15-20 minutes, until the chickens cooked through and the sauce has thickened. Remove from the heat and whisk in the butter. To serve, spoon the sauce over the chicken, and garnish with fresh thyme. Rice, noodles or crusty bread would be a nice accompaniment to soak up the lovely sauce.

Delicious served with long grain and wild rice garnished with fresh thyme