The first thing I had to think about was what I wanted for my sauce. I still had a bottle of port left over from my last fancy chicken dish, so I decided to use that. I wanted some shallots in there too, but I couldn't find shallots at the farmer's market. All I found were these young onions.
I used some thin chicken cutlets because they cook quickly. I did a very standard breading on these. I dredged them in rice flour, dipped them in egg, and coated them with a mixture of ground hazelnuts and gluten-free breadcrumbs. Then I fried them up.
Time to make the sauce. I sauteed the onion, added the cherries, and deglazed the pan with the port and some homemade chicken stock. I needed just a little something more.
I raided the spice cabinet and squeezed my brains. I did a little mad-scientist-style spice mixing until I came up with the perfect flavoring for my sauce: coriander, allspice, cinnamon, and cardamon along with just a pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Well, thanks for the inspiration Emily, because this was a really good dish. I think it made up for the disappointing cherry sauce I had at Trio in Jackson. I really want to make this one again.
On the side was sauteed lambs quarter. I saw it in the farmer's market and was curious. I wasn't terribly impressed with it. It's greens.
Hazelnut-Crusted Chicken with Cherry Sauce
1 pound chicken cutlets
Flour for dredging
1 egg, beaten with a small splash of milk
3/4 cup hazelnuts, toasted and finely ground
1/4 cup bread crumbs
3 young onions, diced (or use 3 large shallots)
2 cups pitted cherries
1 cup port
1/2 cup chicken stock
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cardamon
1/4 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp ground coriander
Pinch salt and pepper
1 Tbl butter
Olive oil for sauteeing
In 3 separate dishes place your flour, egg, and crumbs mixed with the nuts. You can season the flour with a little salt and pepper if you like.
Dip each chicken piece in the flour, the egg, and then the crumb/nut mixture.
Fry in olive oil about 5 minutes per side. Remove from pan and keep warm.
Add onions and cook until softened. Add cherries and cook until soft and are giving off their juice.
Stir in port and chicken stock, scraping up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Add spices. Simmer until reduced by about half.
Stir in the butter and cook another minute until nice and thick.
Serve sauce over chicken.