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Saturday, August 28, 2010

Ode to Chicken Via Veneto

For many years, we on occasion visited a restaurant by the name of Sangiovese.  They served a dish called Chicken Via Veneto.  It was basically chicken strips lightly dipped in flour then browned and served in a white wine sauce with artichoke hearts and pistachios.  It was served in a small copper pan that was always hotter than blazes.  I loved that dish!  Unfortunately, Sangiovese was a casualty of the economy about a year ago.

Many years ago, I set out to recreate Chicken Via Veneto.  I was pretty pleased with the results and made it on a regular basis.  Then, it kind of drifted out of my favorites list.  A few weeks ago, on Annies-Eats, I saw a recipe for chicken with an artichoke heart and mushroom sauce.  It reminded me a bunch of Chicken Via Veneto.  So, I took a couple of ideas from Annie's recipe and added them to my Chicken Via Veneto recipe and presto, a new and improved version - except for one thing - I forgot to put the pistachios on top!  Darn, now I'll have to make it again - soon - have to get a photo the right way, you know :-)

 A side note here - Recently I've read that mushrooms that have a bit of age on them are more flavorful than those that are totally fresh from the grocery.  I tested that theory with this recipe.  Unbeknownst to Connie, I used mushrooms that came home from the grocery a week before.  I was shocked when he commented during dinner that the mushrooms were really flavorful - more so than normal.  I thought I was tasting more of their flavor because I expected to.  But it looks like the research may have been correct!

Chicken Via Veneto

two chicken breast halves, either whole or cut into strips (ours were very small so I left them whole)
1/2 c flour
1 tsp bouquet garni
salt and pepper
4 T olive oil
1 can artichoke hearts (reserve the liquid)
8 oz sliced cremini mushrooms
2 T flour
1/2 c white wine
1/4 c roasted pistachios


Pour a tablespoon of olive oil into a medium skillet.  Once it's hot, add the mushrooms.

Cook them until they're browned and softened.  Chop the artichoke hearts and add. 

Turn the heat to low.

Pour a couple of tablespoons of olive oil in another medium skillet.  Put it on medium heat.  Mix the flour, bouquet garni, salt and pepper. 

Roll the chicken strips in the seasoned flour. 

Brown the chicken once the oil reaches the point that a drop of water sizzles. 

(I cannot get this photo to load right side up...)

Once the chicken is browned nicely, remove it from the skillet and put it on a plate or in a baking dish.  Tent it with aluminum foil to keep it warm. Add more olive oil or a bit of butter to the pan.  Stir up the brown bits on the bottom of the pan (aka the fond.)  Add the flour and stir for 5-10 minutes until the roux is light brown. 

Slowly add the reserved artichoke heart liquid and the white wine.  Stir until it's thickened.  Add the vegetables to the pan and stir to coat. 

Plate the chicken over rice or couscous.  Serve the vegetables over the chicken.  Top with the roasted pistachios. 

Thank you for the inspiration, Annies-Eats!!!  BTW - the changes I made based on Annie's recipe were to add bouquet garni to the flour mixture and mushrooms to the artichoke hearts.



Wow! Thia looks like a PERFECT fall dish!

Becky said...

My husband shouldn't have fried foods, so I will modify your recipe to use baked or grilled chicken, and then make sauce. It wouldn't be the same, but I'm forever changing recipes to fit our diet.

sara826 said...

That looks fabulous! I will definitely try this one!

ravienomnoms said...

What a great post! Looks great!

City Share said...

I have some chicken breasts in my fride awaiting a purpose... this might be it. This looks delicious! Thanks for the recipe.

The Mom Chef said...

Ahhh, aged mushrooms. I wonder if that's why dried mushrooms taste so good. This looks fantastic and is added to the dishes I need to make (when I'm the only one home since I'm the only mushroom fan and I think it's a must add).

Kate said...

Becky - actually, that's a great idea - I wonder how this would taste baked with the sauce. Then, you could thicken the sauce with some cornstarch when you take the dish out of the oven... I'm going to try and remember to try that next time :-) Kate

danasfoodforthought said...

This sounds fantastic! Mushrooms and artichokes are two of my absolute favorites!