Herb & Almond Crusted Chicken Marsala will change your life!
Okay, I'm being a bit dramatic... but you don't want to miss this recipe!
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It may or may not be life changing, but it certainly does bring excitement to the dinner table!
When you think of Chicken Marsala, don't you immediately think comfort food? I know I do. Breaded and fried chicken cutlets, smothered in a deliciously creamy mushroom & wine sauce and served over a bed of mashed potatoes or pasta! YUM! Then I think... fattening and not happening! Until now... YIPPEE!
Herb & Almond Crusted Chicken Marsala has saved the
day year! I owe this inspiration to one of our friends & a huge fan of The Salted Pepper, Beth. She and her husband graciously gave us a variety of fresh herbs from their garden after I mentioned in our Facebook Group - Simply Cooking with Louise - that I hadn't planted herbs this year and was really missing them.
How to store fresh cut herbs
Jeff came home from work with 4 bags of herbs; Italian parsley, Rosemary, Basil, and Mint. I felt like I had won the lottery! I immediately started thinking of the different dishes I could make with each of the herbs... then, life happened and I was so busy, the herbs were left unused for a few days.
I hadn't even looked to see if they were still fresh. I know, I'm horrible. To be given such a gift and treat it with complete disregard. Thankfully, Beth had wrapped the stems in a moist paper towel and sealed them in plastic baggies. I opened up the baggies and left them on my counter. This created a hot house effect and the herbs were just as fresh several days later as they were when they were freshly picked.
Here are a few tips on keeping your herbs fresh longer:
Basil: Wrap the stems in a moist paper towel and place in an unsealed plastic bag.
Or place stems in a jar of water (like a flower arrangement) and cover with a plastic bag. Leave on your counter.
DO NOT PUT BASIL IN THE REFRIGERATOR. Basil doesn't like the cold and this causes the leaves to turn black. Basil can stay fresh up to a week or longer when properly stored.
Parsley: After rinsing your parsley, lay out on paper towels and allow to dry. The secret is to make sure the leaves are very dry before placing in the fridge. Just like basil, either wrap the stems in damp (not soaking wet) paper towel and place in a plastic bag (don't seal it) and store in the fridge.
Alternatively, you can place the stems in a jar with a few inches of water and cover it with a plastic bag and store in the fridge 1-2 weeks. Be sure to change the water every few days.
Rosemary: Wrap Rosemary in a damp paper towel very loosely. If you wrap it tightly this could trap moisture and encourage mold growth. Seal in a plastic bag and store in the fridge up to 3 weeks.
Pro Tip: You can also freeze Rosemary if you want to store it longer than 3 weeks. Simply separate rosemary into sprigs and freeze on a cookie sheet for several hours. Place frozen rosemary sprigs in a sealed plastic bag and freeze until you want to use it.
Fresh herbs really enhance the flavor of your food and they are pretty easy to grow yourself.
I like to start my herbs from seed. Yes, this does take longer... but there is really something special about watching them grow from seed. It's magical, really.
I use an indoor herb tray with a lid that provides a hot house effect for your seeds like this one from Walmart.
It has everything you need to start your seeds indoors and with very little care they will flourish.
The pods are then easily transplanted into larger containers when your plants have grown.
Pro Tip: Make sure when you are planting herbs, whether from seed or an established plant, that you allow the soil to drain. Root rot occurs when the roots sit in water saturated soil for a period of time. This can be done very simply by placing 1-2 inches of small rocks/stones in the bottom of your container and/or placing several holes in the bottom of your container before adding soil and the plants.
From no plan to perfection with Parsley of all things
As I said earlier, I procrastinated using the herbs Beth and her husband gave us and I knew my window of opportunity was going to run out soon! The last thing I wanted was to hold my head in shame and confess to them that I let their herbs go to waste because I got too busy to use them.
You've heard me say this over and over, but here it goes again. I had no plan. Zero idea what to do with the herbs. I had four different herbs to use and use FAST! So my brain began to think what food I had in the fridge and I came up with a modified version of Chicken Marsala and a quick dessert using the mint. Rosemary √, Basil √, Mint √, Parsley Ø
Can I confess a secret to you? I've never bought fresh parsley. I've never cooked with fresh parsley because... well, it's boring and tastes like grass, right? Sure, I see the famous chefs on Food Network using parsley all the time and I've always thought, why? I was close to just ignoring the parsley all together or just using it as a garnish... but, how could I do that to my friend Beth? I couldn't. And boy am I glad I didn't.
I could hardly believe it, but when I was done making Herb & Almond Crusted Chicken Marsala, it was the parsley that came through the most of all the herbs. Sure, the rosemary and basil is wonderful... but, the fresh and slight tang that came from the Italian parsley was spot on. Not like grass at all. Thanks, Beth!
This recipe couldn't be simpler and it's perfect for a quick weeknight meal. Let's get to it!
What you'll need:
- Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast or Chicken Cutlets
- Fresh Basil
- Fresh Italian Parsley
- Fresh Rosemary
- Marsala Wine
- Chicken Stock
- Heavy Whipping Cream
- Monterey Jack Cheese
Trim excess fat from chicken breast and cut into cutlet size portions about 4 ounces each. You can also buy pre-cut chicken cutlets, but they can be $2.00-$3.00 more a pound. I use a (affiliate link) handy tool from Pampered Chef to cut my chicken breasts, but you can do it by hand with a sharp knife too.
Here is a tutorial on how to do it by hand: How to Cut Chicken Breasts Into Cutlets
Scramble an egg in a shallow bowl large enough to dip your chicken pieces into. Grind your almonds into a coarse texture using a (affiliate link) spice/coffee/nut grinder or a food processor. I like to pulse the grinder just a few times to keep some almond pieces a little bigger for better texture. Place in a shallow bowl big enough for you to dredge your chicken through.
Preheat your oven to 400° F. Chop up your Basil, Parsley, & Rosemary. Add to crushed almonds. Add ½ tsp salt. Mix well. Dip your chicken pieces into the egg mixture and then dredge in herb and crushed almond mixture making sure to coat both sides well.
Heat 2 Tbsp Olive oil and 1 Tbsp Butter in a non stick skillet. Turn heat on medium and when the oil/butter is very hot, but not burning, place chicken in pan. Allow to cook about 2 minutes and flip. Cook another 2 minutes. Adjust heat as necessary to avoid burning. Remove from pan and place on baking sheet in preheated oven for 10 minutes. TIP: If you are making this ahead of time, don't cook the chicken in the oven until just before serving and cook for 15 minutes or until internal temp reaches 165°F.
Slice mushrooms. In the same pan you cooked the chicken, add 1 Tbsp butter and ½ Tbsp olive oil and heat on medium. Add sliced mushrooms in a single layer. Cook until golden brown (about 2-3 minutes), flip and cook an additional minute.
Slice onion and add to pan. Add Marsala wine and chicken stock. Cook over medium low heat until liquid has reduced by half. This takes 5-7 minutes.
When chicken is done, remove from oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes. Add heavy cream and grate Monterrey Jack cheese into pan with the mushrooms and onions. Stir until cheese has melted and sauce thickens.
Plate the chicken on a bed of sautéed zoodles and spoon the Marsala sauce over top. If you aren't worried about the carbs, try it over mashed potatoes or pasta!
Herb & Almond Crusted Chicken Marsala
- 1 lb Chicken Breast Boneless, Skinless
- .25 cup almonds chopped
- 1 egg
- .25 cup basil chopped
- .125 cup parsley chopped
- .5 Tbsp rosemary chopped
- 1 tsp sea salt divided
- 2 Tbsp salted butter
- 1.5 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 8 ounces mushrooms
- ½ sweet onion
- .5 cup Marsala Wine
- ⅔ cup chicken stock
- 1 ounce Monterey Jack Cheese
- 1 Tbsp heavy whipping cream
- Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F. Scramble the egg in a shallow bowl or dish.
- Crush Almonds until they are a coarse texture. Chop herbs and add to almonds. Add ½ tsp salt and mix well.
- Trim Chicken. Cut in half through the middle (see post for details) and cut into 4 equal servings. Dip the chicken in the egg making sure to get both sides and dredge in the almond mixture
- Heat 2 Tbsp Olive oil and 1 Tbsp Butter in a non stick skillet. Turn heat on medium and when the oil/butter is very hot, but not burning, place chicken in pan. Allow to cook about 2 minutes and flip. Cook another 2 minutes. Remove from pan and place on baking sheet in preheated oven for 10 minutes
- Slice mushrooms. Add 1 Tbsp butter and ½ Tbsp olive oil to saute pan and heat on medium. Add sliced mushrooms in a single layer. Cook until golden brown (about 2-3 minutes), flip and cook an additional minute.
- Slice onion and add to pan. Add Marsala wine and chicken stock. Cook over medium low heat until liquid has reduced by half. This takes 5-7 minutes.
- When chicken is done, remove from oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes
- Add heavy cream and grate Monterey Jack cheese into pan. Stir until cheese has melted and sauce thickens.
- Plate chicken and spoon mushroom sauce on top. Serve & Enjoy.