Quick and deeply flavorful, this citrusy cream sauce is perfect with seared chicken, fish or pork cutlets. Its delicious simplicity makes for an easy weeknight meal, yet it’s equally suitable for special occasions.
Chef Greg says, “When I first made this recipe for family and friends, it immediately became a favorite. Even those who seldom cook have learned to make it and share it with others.”
Cook time: 20 min
1 1/2 -2 lb boneless and skinless chicken breasts
1/2 t ea salt and pepper
1 1/2 c all-purpose flour *
3 T olive oil
1 T butter
3 T lemon juice, freshly squeezed (1 lg lemon)
1/2 c dry white wine
1 c heavy cream
1 T Dijon mustard
1 T capers, drained
1 t fresh tarragon, chopped (sub basil or parsley, as desired)
scant pinch ground turmeric (optional, for color)
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 lb linguine *
3 T extra virgin olive oil
2 T fresh parsley, chopped
1 sm zucchini or yellow summer squash
2 c arugula (or sub spinach)
Slice chicken breasts into four equal portions. For thick breasts, slice in half horizontally, then cut into portions. All pieces should be roughly the same thickness for even cooking. Generously salt and pepper each piece and dust in flour, shaking off excess.
Heat olive oil in large skillet over medium heat and add chicken pieces in single layer (should be sizzling lightly). Gently move chicken pieces in pan to evenly disperse hot oil; add another tablespoon or two of oil if pan appears dry. Sear chicken until golden brown, approx. 5 min; flip and add butter, lemon juice and wine. Reduce liquid by half, cooking 2-3 min, until sauce thickens, being careful not to overcook.** Stir in cream, mustard, capers, tarragon and turmeric (if desired for a golden color). Reduce until sauce slightly thickens again and chicken is cooked through to 165º internal temp. Remove from heat, season as desired and serve immediately with pasta and vegetables.
While chicken is cooking, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook linguine al dente, drain and toss with extra virgin olive oil and parsley. Reserve and keep warm. Cut zucchini into long strips and sauté quickly in a little olive oil over medium high heat until softened. Combine pasta with arugula and zucchini. Divide among four plates, topping with chicken breast portions and finishing with sauce. Garnish with tarragon leaves.
* To make this recipe gluten-free friendly, use gluten-free pasta and flour.
** Chef’s tip: For best results, have all ingredients ready, measured and at hand before beginning. The sauce should simmer gently; if it begins to separate (oil appears on surface), remove from heat and briefly whisk in a small amount of butter or cream. A “broken” sauce is still delicious, just not as pretty.