Monday, September 8, 2008

Chicken Florentine and Roasted Red Pepper Orzo

I love browsing cooking web sites for ideas. I keep a recipe box on Epicurious, and have a list of other recipes to try on my computer. When planning my menus for the week, I turned to that list for inspiration. Giada's Chicken Florentine Style seemed like the perfect Sunday night meal. I made roasted red pepper orzo as a side.

Chicken Florentine Style

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • All-purpose flour, for dredging
  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter I used less butter, added EVOO
  • 2 tablespoons shallots, sliced I used 1 medium shallot
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic I used 3 cloves
  • 1 1/2 cups dry white wine I didn't have wine, so I used 1/2 c vermouth and 1 c chicken broth - perfect!
  • 1 cup whipping cream I used light cream
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • 2 (10-ounce) packages frozen cut-leaf spinach, thawed, drained I used fresh - not sure why she used frozen in this recipe!


  • Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper (I also added some paprika and red pepper flakes). Dredge the chicken in the flour to coat lightly. Shake off any excess flour.
  • Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a heavy large skillet over medium heat. I used 1 tbsp butter and 1 tbsp EVOO
  • Add the chicken and cook until brown, about 5 minutes per side. Transfer the chicken to a plate and tent with foil to keep it warm. My chicken had a touch of pink in the center so I finished it in the oven.
  • Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in the same skillet over medium heat. I used 1 tbsp butter and 1 tbsp EVOO. Add the shallots and garlic and saute until the shallots are translucent, stirring to scrape up any browned bits on the bottom of the skillet, about 1 minute. I also added a pinch of red pepper flakes.
  • Add the wine (I added the vermouth first, let it cook off a bit, and then added the chicken broth). Increase the heat to medium-high and boil until the liquid is reduced by half, about 3 minutes.
  • Add the cream and boil until the sauce reduces by half, stirring often, about 3 minutes.
  • Stir in the parsley.
  • Season the sauce, to taste, with salt and pepper.
  • Add the chicken and any accumulated juices to the sauce, and turn the chicken to coat in the sauce.
  • Meanwhile, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter in another large skillet over medium heat (I used EVOO only). Add the spinach and saute until heated through. Season the spinach, to taste, with salt and pepper. Arrange the spinach over a platter. Place the chicken atop the spinach. Pour the sauce over and serve.

The sauce was so delicious, and I liked the addition of red pepper flakes. Also, adding paprika to the chicken before cooking helped give it a deeper color. I would never use frozen spinach in this dish - I only use frozen if the spinach is not a main ingredient, or not being eaten alone, such as in my spinach artichoke dip or tortellini soup.

I have grown to love the flavor of roasted red peppers, and especially love pairing it with spinach. I whipped up a roasted red pepper orzo as our side.


  • 1 tsp butter and 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 roasted red pepper, chopped
  • 2 tbsp onion, chopped
  • 1 c dry orzo
  • 2.5 cups chicken broth
  • Approximately 2 tbsp Parmesan cheese


  • To roast the pepper, I put it over the flame on my stove, and turned it every few minutes until all sides were blackened. Then I put it in a bowl, covered it with plastic wrap, and let it sweat for about 15 minutes. After sweating it is really easy to peel off the skin. Seed the chop the pepper.
  • Heat butter and oil in a pot.
  • Add onions and saute 1-2 minutes.
  • Add orzo and toss until coated.
  • Add broth, bring to a boil, then turn heat to low. Cover and let simmer until broth is absorbed, about 20 minutes.
  • Stir in roasted red peppers and cheese.

Delicious! I kept these leftovers for my own lunch today...sorry dad! I'll have to make it for him sometime :)

Have a great week!

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  1. What a delicious meal! I'll have to try the chicken florentine recipe you posted soon!(Sadly, I'm not a red bell pepper fan) :(

  2. I think I actually have everthing to make the chicken recipe! If only I didn't have to take the boys to karate tonight... perhaps tomorrow night! Yum!