For some reason I've had a hankering for a saucy chicken dish for a while now, maybe 'cause the weather has changed around these parts. This is what I whipped up last night. Yup, our 'fall' has kicked in, that is when you turn off your A/C at nighttime and wake up in the morning hoping to find a comfy warming pair of sweats to pull on until it's time to turn the A/C back on mid-day. It is also a time when switching from sweating hot to chilled to the bone cold and back around again can cause the minor cold/flu/allergy and that 'oh I wish my mom was here to make me feel better' symptom. Something chickening is definitely in order.
This is also easy on the tummy, that is, not my typical spicy warm-to-my-toes fiery hot chili or even my normal version of alfredo as I did not make this with heavy cream but opted instead on a somewhat lighter milk blend (feel free to use reduce or fat-free, it's just not in my fridge).
Creamy Chicken Alfredo
with mushrooms and asparagus
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 -8 ounce package sliced button mushrooms
1 medium white onion, chopped
1/2 teaspoon dried crushed thyme
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 cup Marsala, dry sherry or white wine
2 boneless chicken breast, cut into bite size pieces
1 bunch fresh young asparagus tips, blanched or steamed, (or 1 -9 oz package frozen asparagus cuts separated yet kept frozen)
4 servings cooked egg noodles, pasta or rice
3 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon instant chicken bouillon
2 garlic toes, minced
1 1/2 cups milk
1 cup half-n-half cream
salt and pepper to taste
pinch of nutmeg
1 1/2 cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Heat a large skillet over medium high heat, add the olive oil and swirl pan to coat the bottom. Toss in the mushrooms, onions, thyme and pepper. Let cook undisturbed until browning starts to appear and then stir in the Marsala. Add the chicken and allow to come to a boil; reduce heat to medium and continue to cook, stirring often until chicken turns to a lighter color (white) on the outside yet still pink on the inside. Cover with lid, reduce heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes. Scatter asparagus on top of chicken mixture, add cover and remove from heat.
Note: Be sure to save the liquid from the cooked chicken mixture, it will make a fantastic starter for your next meal ~ think seasoned chicken stock.