Chicken Veronique

CHICKEN VERONIQUE
4 to 6 servings

  • 4 to 6 chicken half-breasts or 1½ to 2 pounds boneless chicken breast pieces
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons butter or margarine, divided (see note)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and chopped
  • 8 ounces mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • ½ cup chopped green onion (include some green tops)
  • 1 (14-ounce) can chicken broth, undiluted
  • 2 tablespoons chopped crystallized/candied ginger (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon paprika or to taste
  • Pinch of sugar or granulated sugar substitute or to taste
  • 1 cup seedless white or red grapes or a combination, stems removed
  • ¼ cup cold water
  • 2 tablespoons corn starch
  • 2 teaspoons minced parsley for garnish

May remove skin of chicken half breasts, if desired.  In a large heavy skillet, melt 1 to 2 tablespoons butter over moderate heat.  Add chicken half-breasts or boneless breast pieces and brown in butter over moderate to high heat, about 1 to 2 minutes per side; sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper to taste.  Remove chicken pieces and set aside.  Add remaining 1 tablespoon butter to skillet and melt over moderate heat; add garlic, mushrooms, and green onion to skillet and sauté until vegetables are tender.  Stir in broth, ginger, if desired, lemon juice, paprika, and sugar, blending well.  Return chicken to skillet; reduce heat, cover, and simmer 35 to 40 minutes or until chicken half-breasts or boneless pieces are fork tender.  Add grapes and continue cooking for 5 minutes.  Remove from heat; transfer chicken pieces to a warm platter, cover, and keep warm. 

In a 1-cup measure or other small bowl, blend a small amount of the cold water into cornstarch until smooth; gradually blend in remaining cold water into corn starch mixture.  Stir cornstarch mixture into broth mixture in skillet.  Cook, stirring constantly, being careful not to break grapes, over moderate heat until sauce is thickened.  Adjust seasoning to taste. 

Arrange one to two chicken half-breasts or boneless pieces on each dinner plate; spoon sauce with grapes over each portion.  Garnish each serving with a sprinkle of minced parsley.

Note: May omit butter or margarine; liberally coat skillet with butter-flavored non-caloric vegetable  cooking spray.

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