- 1 to 1½ pound(s) boneless chicken breasts or very thin chicken breast pieces
- Flour as needed
- 3 tablespoons butter or margarine
- 2 tablespoons cooking oil (corn, canola, or safflower oil)
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
- ½ cup brandy
- 1/3 cup heavy cream (optional) (see note)
- Minced parsley (no stems) as desired for garnish
Flatten the chicken breasts with the flat side of a French knife or pound with a meat mallet until chicken breast pieces are flattened. On a sheet of wax paper, dredge chicken pieces in flour, lightly coating each piece. In a large heavy skillet or sauté pan, melt butter and heat oil over high heat. Add chicken pieces in one layer and not overlapping. Brown the chicken pieces quickly, about 1 to 1½ minutes per side, depending upon the thickness of the pieces. When the chicken pieces are cooked through and done, remove from heat (retaining hot drippings in pan) and set aside. Season chicken pieces with salt and pepper to taste. Add brandy to skillet or sauté pan containing hot drippings. Over high heat, scrape the cooking residue from the bottom of the pan, mixing into the pan liquid. When the brandy and fat begin to separate, quickly blend in the cream with a wire whisk. Stir constantly over high heat until the cream is well blended and the sauce is thickened. Reduce heat to moderate and return chicken pieces to sauce, coating each piece. Transfer chicken pieces to a heated large heat-proof platter, arranging in one layer so they do not overlap. Or, arrange chicken pieces on individual plates, dividing evenly. Pour remaining sauce from pan over chicken on platter or individual servings. Garnish with minced parsley.
Note: May omit cream and use 1/3 cup half-and-half or milk or reduced-fat or skim milk; however, the flavor will not be as rich and sauce not as thick. Or, may omit the cream, if desired; flavor of the brandy will be more intense and sauce will not be as thick. May add a few drops of water or lemon juice so that fat and brandy do not separate.
Mushroom Accompaniment: In a large heavy skillet, sauté 8 to 12 ounces thinly sliced fresh mushrooms in 2 tablespoons hot olive oil or melted butter (or 1 tablespoon of each) over moderate to high heat until lightly browned, stirring frequently. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Do not overcook; mushrooms should not be too soft and mushy. May garnish with a sprinkle of minced parsley (no stems), if desired.