I made this meal almost 2 months ago and I'm just getting around to blogging it, which is insane because it was a huge hit in our house! My sister came over for dinner but I had no meal plan set, so we dug through blogs together and decided on this. You see, my sister is obsessed with balsamic vinegar. And not in a normal way. She uses it as a pasta sauce. The browner the better. Ew. I love balsamic vinegar but not nearly to the extent my sister does! This came together quickly (bonus) and was excellent (double bonus)! It tasted rich and flavorful. All three of us loved this and I think it would be perfect for those early fall days that I am eagerly waiting for.
Source: What's Cooking, Chicago?
1/2 pound orzo pasta
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 2 turns of the pan
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, 6 ounces
salt & pepper to taste
2 tablespoons butter
10 oz cremini or baby portobello mushrooms, sliced (about 1 1/2 cups)
10 oz white mushrooms, sliced (about 1 1/2 cups)
2 large cloves garlic, chopped
1 tablespoon thyme leaves, a couple of sprigs, chopped
1/2 medium onion, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups chicken stock
1 1/2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons heavy cream or half-and-half
1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley for garnish
1/4 cup crumbled cooked bacon for garnish (optional)
1-Prepare the pasta by heating a large pot of water to a boil. Salt the water and add orzo pasta. Cook to al dente.
2- Prepare the mushrooms by preheating a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat and add extra-virgin olive oil. Season chicken liberally with salt, pepper garlic powder. Add to the hot skillet. Cook the chicken for 5 to 6 minutes on each side. Remove the chicken from the pan and cover with foil to keep warm.
3- Return the skillet to the heat, turn heat back a bit, and add the butter. Once the butter melts add the mushrooms and brown stirring occasionally for about 4 to 5 minutes. Once the mushrooms are brown season with salt and pepper then add the garlic, thyme and shallots. Cook stirring occasionally for about 2 minutes or until the shallots are wilted. Sprinkle the flour into the pan and cook 2 minutes more. Whisk in the stock, balsamic vinegar and the cream. Turn the heat up to high and simmer for about 2-5 minutes or until thickened.
4- To serve, pile orzo on dinner plates and top with top with a chicken breast and sauce. Garnish with chopped parsley and crumbled bacon (if using.)