By Cat, Jan 2009 (Photo, right, from Wikimedia Commons)
This is one of my favorite quick recipes; I love to serve it with potato gnocchi sharing the sauce (see also Potato Gnocchi with Gorgonzola Sauce). I usually use frozen potato gnocchi, but if you have time, making your own is the best.
After testing, I revised my original adaptation of the recipe; that revision is presented here.
Chicken Cutlets with Gorgonzola Sauce
This recipe is adapted from “Petto di pollo con Gorgonzola” in the Daily Inter Lake, November 18, 2009, reprinted from the Los Angeles Times, by Noelle Carter (1). Except for the addition of spinach, and using blue cheese, it is very similar to Chicken Breasts Baked with Camembert Sauce (a.k.a. Chicken with Cooleeney Sauce).
The original recipe calls for 4 chicken breast halves, but does not indicate the weight of each. I’ve modified this version for 4 each 6-oz breast pieces. Chickens these days are bred for breasts as big as a turkey! You may want to cut each half-breast in half, crosswise, if the breasts are large, to get the 6-oz size. Or you can use boneless thighs – you won’t need to brine them, but then will need to season them with salt.
The original recipe calls for 3 different cheeses: Gorgonzola, Mozzarella and Parmigiano-Reggiano. I prefer more gorgonzola with just a sprinkling of Romano or Parmesan at the very end. If you cannot find Gorgonzola, use Danish Blue cheese or Blu Brie.
Serves 4. See below the recipe for testing. My version of the recipe reflects modifications from 6/10 testing.
Ingredients & Equipment:
- 4 chicken breast pieces (6 oz each), brined (bone-in, skin on; or boneless & skinless)
- ¼ cup unbleached white flour or tapioca starch, for dusting
- 1 – 1½ cup raw heavy cream (or whipping cream)
- 1 cup sour cream or Crème Fraiche
- 4 oz Gorgonzola (or other blue cheese), crumbled, or to taste
- 1 lb fresh spinach, cleaned & stemmed
- 1 Tbsp coconut oil or lard, or more as needed
- 4 – 8 cloves garlic, chopped
- 2 – 4 oz grated Romano or Parmesan, or mix of Italian cheeses such as Asiago, Parmesan and Romano
- Unrefined sea salt to taste
- freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 Tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley
- medium cast iron skillet or chicken fryer
- splatter screen (optional)
- ovenproof dish
- fork for turning chicken
- Prep: Brine the chicken breast halves for 30 minutes. Rinse and pat dry. Remove bones and skins. If breasts are large, cut each in half crosswise, then place each piece between sheets of waxed paper and pound to ¼” thick, avoiding tearing. Alternately, cut breast pieces crosswise into ½” thick cutlets (don’t need to pound) – my preference. See Preparing Chicken or Other Cutlets for more.
- Season cutlets with pepper, and dust with flour, shaking off excess. Set aside.
- Wash and rinse spinach well, removing stems from leaves. Blanch in boiling water (or in steamer), then drain and shock in a bowl of ice water. Drain again, pressing out all excess water. Set aside.
- Cook chicken: Heat coconut oil/lard in skillet over medium-high heat. Brown chicken, 2 minutes on each side, avoiding crowding. Adjust heat as necessary to avoid burning, and adding more fat as needed to keep thin film on bottom of pan. Remove pieces to an oven-proof dish to keep warm.
- Sauce: Reduce heat to medium & add more fat to pan; sauté garlic just until aromatic but not scorched. Stir in spinach, and warm for a minute; remove from pan and set aside.
- Add cream and sour cream to skillet. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to a good simmer and cook, stirring frequently, until thickened, about 10 minutes. Stir in Gorgonzola and continue to cook, stirring frequently, until melted, 1 – 2 minutes. Add spinach/garlic mixture; stir constantly for a minute or so so to merge the flavors. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat.
- Finish: Heat broiler (or use your oven at 350°F). Spoon sauce over each breast, then evenly sprinkle the grated cheese over each portion. Place under broiler just long enough to melt the cheese and slightly brown the sauce. Remove from broiler and sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve immediately.
- Serve with gnocchi, fettuccini, farfalle (bow-tie pasta), or steamed Brown, White, or Wild Rice, and a salad of greens dressed with vinaigrette (I like my Basil-Balsamic version on that page).
6/2/10: Made half recipe, and cut the breast crosswise into ½” thick cutlets instead of pounding the larger pieces. As half-recipe, I used ½ cup cream, but after boiling it down to ¼ cup, it just didn’t make enough sauce. Next time, I’ll double the cream, using half as regular cream and half as sour cream which will make the sauce thicker. Also, I’d like more Gorgonzola flavor, so will double that also. Otherwise, this is delicious!
6/10/10: Again made half recipe with chicken slices as before, but I used 1/2 cup sour cream and ½ cup heavy cream, and I used double the amount of Gorgonzola (4 oz total). I changed the sequence of steps: instead of cooking down the cream first in separate pan from chicken/garlic/spinach, I used same pan for chicken, then garlic/spinach, then cream. And I used only a sprinkling of Romano on top for broiling (it’s all I had). It was great. This is a keeper! (as modified). The recipe has been updated for these changes.
- “Petto di pollo con Gorgonzola” in the Daily Inter Lake, November 18, 2009, reprinted from the Los Angeles Times, by Noelle Carter (latimes.com/features/food/la-fo-sos11b-2009nov11,0,347198.story