Chicken is so versatile and has a comforting factor about it. You can make 1000’s of different recipes. We had been to the Weald Smokery and bought some gorgeous cheese, salmon and venison which they smoke in house, they also sell proper Lancashire black pudding and I think chicken and black pudding go really well together, in fact I prefer it in my dinner than I do on a breakfast. This dish is so balanced you have your juicy chicken breast, savouriness from the black pudding, sweetness from the vermouth in the sauce and then a mild sour or irony note from the spinach. As usual with most of my recipes it’s tasty food without the calories!
- 500ml chicken stock
- 2 boneless and skinless chicken breasts
- 20g butter
- 1/2 of a full black pudding sausage (or 12 slices)
- 50ml sweet vermouth bianco
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 1 tbsp chopped tarragon leaves
- 500g cooking spinach
- salt and pepper
- Put the stock into a wide-based pan and boil it vigorously until it has reduced to about 150ml
- Season the chicken breasts on both sides with salt and pepper.
- Heat a small knob of the butter in a large frying pan and, when it is foaming, add the chicken breasts and cook over a medium heat turning regulary for 10 minutes, until browned on both sides and cooked through.
- Slice the black pudding into 12 pieces. Remove the chicken from the pan and keep warm. Add the slices of black pudding to the pan and fry them for one minute on each side. Set them aside with the chicken.
- Add the vermouth to the pan and boil, scraping up all the browned bits from the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon, until reduced to about three tablespoons. Add the reduced chicken stock and boil for 1-2 minutes. Whisk in the rest of the butter a small piece at a time, then add the lemon juice and some seasoning to taste.
- Drop the spinach, a large handful at a time, into a large hot pan, adding another as each one wilts down. When all the spinach has been added, cook for one minute, tip into a colander and lightly press out the excess liquid.
- To serve, slice the chicken breasts diagonally and at a slight angle and arrange the slices on the warmed plate with the black pudding and cooked spinach.
- Stir the tarragon leaves into the sauce and spoon some of it over the chicken and the rest of the plate and enjoy with a glass of wine!