The air is crisp and chilly here. It smells like fall outside. Driving into my neighborhood yesterday I was amazed at how pretty it was — all the trees are turning. We’re surrounded by shades of gold, red and orange blending into the green pine.
This dish is a perfect fit for the season. Its cozy aromas of cider, apples, thyme, bay and onions will fill your kitchen. I’ve heard that realtors suggest baking chocolate chip cookies before an open house to appeal to the subconscious desires of visitors. Forget the cookies, this is the dish to make, buyers will want to move in immediately.
In my hunt for a chicken recipe, I looked for one that used cider since I had a gallon from a local farmer’s stand. I also had a bag of Arkansas Black apples from the farmers market. I had never heard of this variety but it’s grown here in the state. The farmers market last week was full of all kinds of North Carolina apples, squashes, pumpkins, gourds, sweet potatoes and greens. You can’t beat the prices or the selection at the farmers market.
This Food Network recipe is another quick dinner for your repertoire, not from Rachael Ray but from Sunny Anderson. I don’t know Sunny, but I love this recipe, definitely a 30-minute meal. It’s absolutely delicious.
I made Linguine with Walnut Pesto to serve alongside. I thought walnuts and apples would go well together. Oh, do they ever. Some of the sauce from the chicken worked its way into the linguine – swoon. The next day when I reheated the linguine for lunch, I added some of the leftover chicken sauce to it. This is a pair made for each other.
Apple Cider Chicken
You’ll need a large skillet.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken tenderloins or breasts
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 Vidalia or sweet onion, chopped
- Granny Smith or Black Arkansas apple, cored and sliced into 1/4-inch wedges
- 1-2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup apple cider
Heat oil and 1/2 tablespoon of the butter in a skillet over medium-high heat. Season the chicken with salt and pepper, add to the pan and sear both sides until golden, about 4 minutes for each side. Remove chicken from the pan and set aside.
Add the remaining butter, additional oil if needed, onion, apple, garlic, thyme and bay leaf. Sauté until the apple begins to color and the onions soften, about 6 minutes. Add the flour and stir, 2 to 3 minutes.
Return the chicken to the pan, add cider, bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer and cover. Cook until the chicken is cooked through, about 12 minutes, or less if your pieces are smaller and thinner.
Original recipe: Apple Cider Chicken, Food Network