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chicken and leek stroganoff

April 28, 2010

Action shot!

That’s MY wine btw, not Kevin’s. There is also a glass thrown in the sauce, so technically, Kev did have some after all.

As I’m taking the photo, please picture me saying, “Honey, do you love me even though I’m such a loser and take pictures of our food?” And him answering, “Yes dear, I love you more than life itself, even though you are totally lame” or something along those lines. Maybe not the “dear” part, and likely not the “more than life itself” either…. just wishful thinking. Although I have recently heard “Sweetheart” thrown in here and there – my favorite term of endearment. Probably because I know I am not generally a sweetheart. But oh how I would love to be.

Jamie Oliver’s Chicken and Leek Stroganoff (I am no longer a leek OR stroganoff virgin! yay!)

Ingredients

sea salt
1/4 cup long grain or basmati rice (basmati was delish!)
1 large leek – this was so fun!
a big handful of crimini or oyster mushrooms (I just used white mushrooms)
2 chicken breasts
olive oil
a pat of butter
a glass of white wine
freshly ground black pepper
a bunch of fresh parsley
1 3/4 cups heavy cream – I used evaporated 2% milk to cut fat and calories and it was still good.
1 lemon

Method

Start the rice and follow package instructions. My rice and stroganoff were ready at exactly the same time, which made my heart warm and put a smile on my face.

Cut both ends off the leek, quarter lengthways, slice across thinly, then wash well under running water. Slice the mushrooms. Slice the chicken breasts into little finger-size pieces.

Put a large frying pan on a high heat and add a good lug of olive oil and a pat of butter. Add the leek to the pan with the white wine, a small glass of water, and a good pinch of salt and pepper. Let it bubble away for 5 minutes, covered loosely with a piece of aluminum foil.

Meanwhile, finely chop the parsley, stalks and all. Remove the foil and add the chicken strips, most of the parsley, the cream (or evaporated milk), and the mushrooms – I also added a couple teaspoons of cornstarch to thicken up the sauce – You probably wouldn’t have to do that with heavy cream. Stir, bring back to a boil, then turn the heat down to medium and simmer for 10 minutes.

Drain your rice. Just before serving, cut your lemon in half and squeeze the juice of one half into the stroganoff. Season to taste. Please, pllllleeeeeease do not make this and leave out the lemon! You would be committing a crime. Against the stroganoff. Or Jamie Oliver. Or me.

Spoon some rice onto each plate and top with the stroganoff. Scatter with the rest of the chopped parsley. Serve with the other lemon half, cut into wedges.

The freshly squeezed lemon really set the whole thing off, so don’t skip it. Sometimes it’s the little things, like fresh parsley instead of dried, or a real lemon instead of juice, that brings a recipe from good to great. AND these little things won’t break the bank – parsley is like 59 cents, and a lemon isn’t much more.

Plus, a few fresh lemons on your kitchen counter just looks cute. And that matters too.

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