“Hey Hun, What’s for dinner?”
“Oh, I dunno, some kind of chicken I guess…”
“Mmmm, sounds great.”
Is this exchange familiar to anyone else out there?! Chicken being the go-to dinner solution leaves us with another problem: how to change it up and keep it flavorful. However, chicken dinner can’t be complicated, because chanced are you’re like me and you prepare dinner most of the time with a crying toddler trying to push you away from the counter and a 5 year old incessantly asking you a million questions about anything that pops into her quickly moving mind.
“Mom, did Jesus make Santa Clause? Does Santa have kids, are the elves his kids? Mom, why do bee stings hurt so bad? Mom, can I have some date squares first? Mom! Mom! MOM!….. why do you look frustrated?” This was the exact dialogue endured while I made this last meal. I could only think of an answer to the last question.
One of my favorite restaurants is Carrabba’s Italian Grill, and one of the best dishes there is the Chicken Bryan. A few years ago I was hired to work there only to find out the following day I’d be moving to Hawaii in two weeks time. Needless to say I couldn’t get my hands on the top secret recipes. Bummer. But the flavors aren’t complicated, just smart, so I knew it could be done at home. Combining basil, sun dried tomatoes, fromage de chevre, and thick creamy white wine butter sauce sounded fun.
I didn’t tell my husband what I was making, and after the first couple of bites his eyes grew wide and he exclaimed ”You made chicken Bryan?!!” Success.
It was a simple matter of getting the sauce just right. After making what can be described at a white wine, butter, and lemon sauce it still tasted a bit too tart and needed to be smoothed down a little more. What did the trick was adding some of the fromage de chevre right into the sauce. Smooth, rich, taste-bud tantalizing, this chicken dinner is just as it should be: easy and satisfying.
- 4 chicken breasts, trimmed clean
- 1 cup butter, divided
- 6-8 cloves garlic, minced (or 8 teaspoons of the pre-minced)
- 8 teaspoons onion, minced (about ½ an onion)
- ¾ cup white wine
- ¾ cup lemon juice (takes about 4 lemons)
- 8 Tablespoons Basil, chiffonade (see chiffonade link in post)
- 12 sun dried tomatoes, sliced thin
- 8 oz goats cheese, divided
- olive oil
- white pepper
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 350.
- Chicken first: remove it from fridge sometime before cooking, meat should be close to room temp for evenly cooked results. Salt and pepper both sides of chicken. Heat some olive oil in a skillet. Brown the chicken on each side, about 3 minutes each.
- My sun-dried tomatoes were the kind stored in olive oil, if you have this kind, add some of the oil from the jar to the top of each chicken breast. Remove from stove-top, cover with a lid, and place in oven to finish cooking. Takes about 10 minutes.
- While the chicken is baking prep the sauce. Sautee onion and garlic in 4 Tablespoons of butter until soft and aromatic.
- Add white wine and lemon juice, reduce to med-low and simmer until reduced by half.
- Turn the heat low and add the remaining butter one tablespoon at a time, slowly melting and letting the mixture emulsify. Salt and pepper with white pepper to taste.
- Add 2 ounces of goats cheese, stirring to keep the sauce smooth and allowing it to fully integrate.
- Remove from heat and then add the chiffonade basil and sliced sun-dried tomatoes.*
- When the chicken breasts are finished, top each with a thick slice of goats cheese and it will begin to melt.
- To serve, top with the sauce and some fresh pieces of basil.
**Note: This is not the recipe from the Carrabba’s restaurant, nor is it a sponsored post... I just LOVE to eat there and was craving a good dish for dinner. I took the idea of the great flavors they use and put it all together the only way I knew how, using the techniques I’m familiar with. Just standing in the kitchen, pulling ingredients from the shelf, and tasting the sauce about 70 times along the way as it was prepared to get it to the point imagined.