Chicken Vino Bianco (Olive Garden-ish)

Chicken Vino Bianco

  • Servings: 2-4
  • Difficulty: easy-medium
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Ingredients

  • 2 chicken breasts, butterflied and cut into medallions
  • 2 roma tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • 2 shallots, diced
  • 3 cups oyster mushrooms, diced
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 3 Tbsps olive oil
  • 2 Tbsps + 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 250 g pasta, cooked al dente

Directions

Season the chicken fillets with salt and pepper, and sprinkle with flour. Add 2 Tbsps of the olive oil and 1 Tbsp of the butter to a pan on medium-high heat until the butter is melted. Place the chicken breasts in the pan and cook until a golden brown and turn. Add another Tbsp of butter to the pan and cook the medallions until the inside temperature reaches 75ºC (165ºF). Remove from the pan, and set aside. Add the remaining olive oil to the pan, add the shallots and sauté, add the mushrooms and sauté until soft. Add the tomatoes, then add the chicken broth and white wine. Cook down until the liquid is reduced significantly. Add 1/4 cup of butter and melt, stirring into the sauce. Add the chicken back into the pan, turning to coat. Place the pasta in a large shallow dish, then top with sauce and chicken. Serve.

And now for the details…

I had a period of time in my early twenties when I was borderline obsessed with the Olive Garden. Raised eyebrows and cringes, I’m sure, from the foodies out there. But I have to admit, I still enjoy visiting, particularly for the lunch of endless soup, salad and breadsticks. Their Zuppa Toscana? Delicious. Yep. I’m losing creditability from the foodie hipsters as I type. I recognize your need to shudder and turn away, but am not changing my mind on this one. Sorry folks, I love food. All food. In my mind, food sources do not need to be subversive, exclusive, or cutting edge to be delicious.

A favourite dish, which unfortunately I have not seen on their menu for well over a decade, was Chicken Vino Bianco. Through some trial and error, I think I have come pretty close to recreating it, and now am sharing with all of you! Pair this with a salad with Olive Garden salad dressing from Costco, and we are bringing the restaurant home!

We start by butterflying the chicken breasts and then cutting them into medallions. This pink cutting board? It is specific for my meat prep! To avoid cross-contamination, I have this separate board that I use strictly for raw meats, fish, and poultry. Safety first people! Now, salt and pepper each side of the medallions, and then dust them with flour. Shake off any excess flour and we are ready to start sautéing!

Heat up some olive oil at medium-high heat and melt the two tablespoons of butter into the oil. Once the butter is completely melted and starts bubbling slightly, add the chicken in a single layer, and cook until browned on both sides and completely cooked through the middle.

Set the chicken aside, but keep the pan hot. Add the shallots and a bit more olive oil if there is little of the oil left in the pan after cooking the chicken. Sauté the shallot until fragrant, then add the mushrooms. Cook until the mushrooms have just begun to turn soft. Next, we add the wine and cook down until the wine has almost completed reduced, there should be little liquid left in the pan.

(Now is also a good time to boil your water for your pasta.)

This is just after adding the wine, lots of liquid to lose yet!

We add our tomatoes next, and allow them to cook down for just a short bit of time, releasing some of their liquid, and softening slightly. Cooking for too long will lose our nice bright colour from the tomatoes, and cause them to smoosh in with the other ingredients, getting lost in the mix.

(Have you added pasta to your water yet? Get that going so you have pasta and sauce at the same time!)

Our last step is to melt in the 1/4 cup of butter, which is going to bring the liquid element back in, creating a nice sauce, and then bring the chicken back into the pan. Spoon sauce over the chicken, getting everything nice and saucy. Do a quick taste test here to see if you need any additional salt or fresh ground pepper. Add more S&P to taste.

Place your pasta in a large dish, then top with the chicken and sauce. If you would like, you can garnish with some fresh parsley and parmesan cheese.

Happy eating.

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