Friday, March 02, 2007
Don't quit your day job, Katie
Katie Couric's Lemon Chicken Recipe
Today's Kitchen Cookbook Copyright 2005
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons flour
3 cups chicken broth
2 lemons, juiced
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Pound chicken breasts with meat pounder to a uniform thickness. Dredge lightly in
flour, shaking off excess.
2. In a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, melt the butter and oil until it sizzles. Add
the chicken breasts and sauté, turning once or twice until cooked through and juices run
clear. Remove chicken and set aside.
3. Whisk in flour and cook for 1 minute until the mixture boils. Boil?! Boil what? - there was hardly any liquid and fat left in the pan.
4. Add lemon juice to the chicken stock and whisk into sauté pan. Now there was way too much liquid in the pan. Reduce heat to a simmer.
5. Return chicken to pan to heat through, thickening sauce to desired consistency.
Season to taste with salt and ground white pepper.
6. Serve the chicken on a bed of Basmati rice, and spoon the sauce over the chicken.
Garnish with chopped parsley and lemon slices. I used Uncle Ben's.
I was hesitant to buy this cookbook but when I saw that it was an IACP Cookbook of the Year finalist in the compilations catagory, I thought maybe I was missing something. It is a visually stimulating cookbook, with lots of photos of the food and also the Today Show stars and guests. There are interviews with those people also. The recipes don't jump out and grab me - either they're too complicated or contain ingredients I have to avoid. This recipe seemed about my speed but it was almost a disaster.
It started off okay, I dredged the chicken in flour and sautéed it. That's when the trouble started. Although it seemed like too much fat in the pan when I started the chicken, there wasn't much left when I added the flour. That was possibly my fault for cooking one extra piece of chicken but I doubt I could have 'boiled' the flour even if I had only cooked 4 breasts.
So I quickly added the liquid, trying to do it slowly to keep it lump free but I didn't succeed. There was just way too much liquid yet I don't think there was an error in the chicken broth amount because it did thicken properly. When I added the chicken back in, it was basically looking like a pot of soup and the coating on the chicken pretty much dissolved into the sauce.
I had to play with the sauce to make this passable. It was very tart so I added a tiny bit of sugar, tried to reduce it down, then added an extra pat of butter. The sauce was fine over rice (thank God I used white and not brown rice because the rice saved this meal) but the chicken was sub-par. It was pretty much naked by the time it came out of the sauce and the sauce just didn't do for the chicken what it did for the rice. This dish looked absolutely nothing like the picture which showed a golden brown and crispy chicken with a spoonful of a darker looking sauce over it.
That was definitely the biggest disappointment of the week - the only disappointment of the week, really. Oh well, sometimes you get a dud. It just kills me considering how many other recipes I have for lemon chicken. And the lemons were 79 cents each!
Blast From The Past: Oven-Fried Lemon Marinated Chicken from November 2006. I think this is more of what I was expecting with today's recipe but as you can see today's recipes pales (literally) in comparison.
Question of the Day: Do you watch Katie Couric? Last time I flipped by her on the nightly news, she looked evil - her eyebrows were 'angry'. Botox gone wrong? I hope it relaxed by now.