Chicken Thigh Florentine

This dish isn’t’ really Italian. I doubt my Italian readers will recognize it as … well, anything.  I doubt my Italian readers will recognize it as … anything.   This is a Florentine in the American sense – meaning something with spinach or a spinach sauce. It’s a take on an Italian American classic, and because it’s a stovetop dish, it can be ready in just a few minutes and without a lot of preparation.

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It also highlights a technique that’s most often used with chicken breasts: pounded cutlets dredged in flour, shallow fried, then braised in a flavorful liquid. I love the way it works with chicken thighs – mostly because they maintain their essential chicken-ness, unlike breast meat which often simply disappears into the background.

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Here, we’ll build a quick sauce of white wine, garlic, and heavy cream that is both a simmer sauce for the chicken, but also the backbone of a rich, creamy spinach and cheese sauce that dresses the meat, and makes a great pasta sauce as well.

Chicken Thigh Florentine

Recipe by DrewCourse: MainCuisine: American, ItalianDifficulty: Medium
Servings

4

servings
Prep time

30

minutes
Cooking time

40

minutes

Chicken thigh version of the Italian American Chicken Florentine.

Ingredients

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken thighs

  • 2 cups packed baby spinach or ½ cup frozen spinach

  • 1 cup heavy cream

  • 1 cup chicken stock

  • ½ cup AP flour

  • ½ cup white wine

  • 2 tbsp clarified butter or neutral oil

  • ½ tsp black pepper

  • 1 tsp kosher salt

  • 1/8th cup grated parmesan cheese

  • 4 cloves garlic

  • Grated nutmeg as garnish (opt)

Directions

  • Peel, trim, and finely mince or microplane the garlic.
  • If using fresh spinach, quickly blanch it in boiling heavily salted water, cool it in ice water, then squeeze out as much water as possible.
  • If using frozen spinach, thaw completely, and squeeze out as much water as possible.
  • Corsely chop the spinach
  • Layer the chicken thighs between two layers of plastic wrap.
  • Using a mallet, a pan, or the flat blade of a heavy knife, pound the chicken until it’s ¼ inch thick and an even thickness throughout.
  • Season the chicken pieces generously on both sides.
  • Spread the flour on a plate or sheet pan.
  • Dredge the chicken in the flour, taking care to make sure all pieces are evenly covered.
  • Allow the chicken to rest 10 minutes for the flour to hydrate.
  • Add two tbsp neutral oil or clarified butter to a pan large enough to hold all four pieces in one layer.
  • Over medium heat fry the cutlets until lightly browned on both sides.
  • Remove the cutlets from the pan and set aside.
  • Add the garlic to the pan and cook 30 seconds.
  • Add the wine and chicken stock and reduce by ½.
  • Add the cream, cheese, and spinach and cook over medium heat until thickened and reduced – about five minutes.
  • Return the cutlets to the pan, and simmer for 10 minutes to rewarm and finish cooking.
  • Tate for seasoning, and add salt and pepper.
  • Garnish with a little fresh grated nutmeg. (opt)
  • To serve, ladle sauce over the cutlets.
  • Serve with spaghetti or other pasta.

Be sure to check out my other food project, The Weekly Menu!

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