Sunday, February 20, 2011

Grandma's Chicken & Gravy

If you read my last post, you know I've been in a a cookin' mood. Mix that with a need to complete Ramblings & Photos' Scavenger Hunt Sunday, and you get Grandma's Chicken & Gravy. I'm making no sense, so let me explain. I have been trying to think of a picture to take for the canned food requisite of the scavenger hunt. We don't use a lot of canned foods, minus cat food, so I was stuck. I have also been a cooking kick. I thought about the canned foods that I did have in my quaint cabinet and it hit me...Campbell's Golden Mushroom soup! This is the staple ingredient in Grandma's most famous dish, loved by all DiCristinas, old and new. It's a classic. So, I thought I could complete the scavenger hunt, share Grandma's scrumptious recipe, and make one of our favorite dinners.

Grandma always told me to slice the chicken into 3 or 4 filets, if you will. I have never been able to do this so I just resort to small bite-sized pieces.

I dreadge the next step (please excuse the corny joke). If I could skip the dredging, I would make this dish a lot more often! Flour...egg...Italian bread crumbs. Easy as that.

Pop it in the frying pan with some piping hot olive oil and brown on both sides. This usually takes a number of batches because I don't like to crowd the chicken. After is batch, place them on a towel-lined plate to absorb some of the excess oil.

While this is all taking place, it's a good idea to get the rice going. Grandma traditionally uses white rice which she butters up until its yellow! Delicious, no doubt...but I use a wild whole grain rice. There's something about the wild rice and the mushroom that makes it more earthy.

Once the chicken is done, I wipe out the pan (just like Grandma told me to). I throw some shallots, garlic, and baby bellas in. Grandma skips right to the gravy, but I'm a firm believer that more is more. Grandma adds sherry, which is definitely the best way to go! In the past, when short on sherry, I've added marsala. Tonight, with neither in the cupboard, I went with some cabernet that I was sipping on.

If Grandma taught me one thing, it's to not give exact measurements. Just eyeball it. Add a couple of cans of Campbell's Golden Mushroom soup. For each can, add one can of water. About a year ago, every food store in my area stopped selling this product! When I did see it at an obscure shop, I loaded up on a dozen or so cans. I thought they discontinued the soup but I think it's only in my area. Grandma helps me out and buys me a few every time she makes it to the store. Love her! Let this simmer and then add the chicken. I usually let this set for awhile so the chicken can soak up all that tasty wine-infused gravy!

When the rice is done and the chicken has picked up all those yummy flavors, serve it and enjoy!

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