Up until recently, I was never a huge fan of meat. I’ve casually tried the vegetarian route a few times, but was never successful. However, I just was never really blown away by most meat products. Normally I would stick to pasta and veggies, with the occasional chicken dish. But after a while, even chicken can get boring. In fact, on most occasions, chicken is boring.

Recently, however, I found a great recipe to spruce up chicken.  The chicken itself is cooked per usual, seasoned with a little salt and pepper, and sautéed in a pan until golden brown. But add a special sauce, and you’ve got a whole different meal.

Chicken With Shallot-Apricot Sauce
from The Kitchn

For the chicken:
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
salt and pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup chicken broth

For the sauce:
1 tablespoon olive oil
5 medium shallots, peeled and sliced thin
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
2 heaping tablespoons apricot jam or preserves
salt and pepper

Season each chicken breast with salt and pepper on both sides. Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large sauté pan over high heat. Cook the chicken breasts for about 3-4 minutes on each side, until they develop a golden brown crust. Cover the pan, reduce the heat to low, and cook for about 5 more minutes, or until the chicken is just cooked through.

When the chicken is finished cooking, remove from the pan, set on a plate, and cover with foil to keep warm. Return the heat to high and add the 1/4 cup of chicken broth, de-glazing the pan and scraping the brown bits from the bottom.

De-glazing the pan

While the chicken is cooking, prepare the sauce. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a medium to large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the shallots, season with salt and pepper, and cook for about 5 minutes, until they begin to get soft and the bottom of the pan begins to brown.

Shallots

Add the 1/2 cup chicken broth to the shallots, scraping the brown bits off the bottom of the pan while the broth reduces. Add the balsamic vinegar, reduce the heat to medium-low, and cook for about 5 more minutes. Add the apricot jam and stir to combine. The sauce will thicken but should still be easily stirred.

To serve, slice the chicken, drizzle with the pan juices, and top with the shallot-apricot mixture.

Chicken With Shallot-Apricot Sauce

This was a great meal! The sauce was really flavorful, as was the chicken. And adding the extra juices from the pan made the whole meal tie in together. I served it over rice (I used jasmine, but I would suggest a brown rice), so there was more food to absorb the sauce. It was tangy and sweet and delicious. This would probably be quite good with some chopped up dried or fresh apricots in there as well, just cut back a bit on the preserves. This will be a go-to dish from now on!

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