Chicken Calvados

Chicken Calvados
Staff Writer
Chicken Calvados
Wini Moranville

Chicken Calvados

Calvados is the famous apple brandy of Normandy, and the bonnes femmes of Normandy often use the spirit to flavor their cooking. But don't feel like you have to buy a bottle of the real thing for this chicken breast recipe. If there's an apple brandy made in your region, reach for that over calvados. As for the apples, use the best locally grown apples you can find. After all, the more local your products, the more true-to-France your cooking will be.

4
Servings
98
Calories Per Serving
Deliver Ingredients

Notes

*Note: If you don't have calvados or apple brandy, you can also use ½ cup apple juice or cider and ½ cup white wine.

Ingredients

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (about 1 ¼ pounds total)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped shallot
  • 1/2 cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup calvados or apple brandy*
  • 2 small tart apples, peeled, cored, and cut into ¼-inch-thick slices
  • 1/4-1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley leaves or chives, or a combination

Directions

Place the chicken breasts, 1 at a time, between 2 sheets of plastic wrap and pound to ¼-inch thickness. (You can also halve each breast horizontally or butterfly them.) Season both sides with salt and pepper, to taste.

In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add the chicken (in batches, if necessary) and cook, turning once, until no longer pink inside, 6-8 minutes (reduce the heat to medium if the meat browns too quickly). Transfer the chicken to a platter and cover with foil to keep warm.

Stir in the shallot and sauté briefly until translucent. Remove the pan from heat and add the broth and calvados, taking care not to let the liquid spatter. Return the pan to the stove and bring to a boil over high heat, stirring with a wire whisk to loosen any browned bits from the bottom of the pan.

Add the apples. Let the mixture boil until the liquid is reduced to ¼ cup, turning the apples occasionally — this should take about 4 minutes, depending on the stove and the pan size (it will take closer to 7 minutes if you substitute apple juice and wine for the calvados).

Stir in ¼ cup cream and boil until the sauce thickens and the apples are crisp-tender. For a creamier sauce, add more cream, 1 tablespoon at a time, and continue to boil until the sauce thickens to the desired consistency.

Season the sauce with additional salt and pepper, to taste. Arrange the chicken on 4 dinner plates, spoon the sauce and apples over the chicken, top with parsley and/or chives, and serve.

Nutritional Facts

Total Fat
3g
4%
Sugar
5g
6%
Saturated Fat
2g
8%
Cholesterol
7mg
2%
Carbohydrate, by difference
13g
10%
Protein
4g
9%
Vitamin C, total ascorbic acid
10mg
13%
Calcium, Ca
9mg
1%
Choline, total
1mg
0%
Fiber, total dietary
1g
4%
Fluoride, F
10µg
0%
Folate, total
11µg
3%
Iron, Fe
1mg
6%
Magnesium, Mg
6mg
2%
Niacin
1mg
7%
Phosphorus, P
34mg
5%
Selenium, Se
3µg
5%
Sodium, Na
308mg
21%
Water
52g
2%
Zinc, Zn
1mg
13%

Chicken Shopping Tip

Buy whole chickens and ask the butcher to quarter them for you. You will save an average of $5 per pound, or more.

Chicken Cooking Tip

Allow meat to rest for at least ten minutes before slicing into it; otherwise, the juices will leak out.

Chicken Wine Pairing

Pinot noir, gamay, merlot, zinfandel, carménère, pinotage, or grenache with grilled, roasted, or other simply cooked chicken; chardonnay, pinot gris/grigio, pinot blanc, or chenin blanc with chicken in cream or light tomato sauce or with chicken crêpes or croquettes; sauvignon blanc or sémillon with fried chicken; viognier with spiced chicken dishes.