|Right Food for the Season - Early Fall|
|Written by Jon Ross-Wiley|
I eat at least four apples a day. When fall rolls around, and the local apples are fresh and crisp, there is no better treat. Honeycrisps are a particular favorite of mine. The name really says it all; these apples are sweet and have a wonderful snap when you bite into them. It is almost as if the apple itself is mimicking a fall day. For this dish, you can use any variety of apple you like depending on the finish you would like to achieve. (Note: City Feed and Supply has a nice variety of apples right now. Their honeycrisps are from Littleton, MA). Lemon juice or sugar can always be added to adjust the acidity or sweetness of the dish. This is a nice one to cozy up to and pair with a seasonal brew. Smuttynose Pumpkin Ale from the Smuttynose Brewery in Portsmouth, New Hampshire comes to mind. A simple salad and a side of butternut squash couscous, and you have fall on a plate.
Honeycrisp Chicken(serves 4)
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 honeycrisp apples, cored, unpeeled, and sliced
1 medium onion, sliced
1/2 cup apple cider
1 1/2 teaspoons cider vinegar
1 teaspoon corn starch (optional)
2 tablespoons butter (optional)
Salt and pepper
Trim chicken breasts and sprinkle with thyme and a dash of salt and pepper. In a large sauté pan, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium-high heat. When the pan is ready, brown chicken on all sides. Transfer chicken to a plate, and add the remaining oil to the pan. Cook the honeycrisp apples (you can substitute in your favorite apple variety here) and onions, stirring occasionally, until golden. Add the apple cider, bring to a boil, and scrape up the brown bits (the good stuff) from the pan. Return the chicken to the pan, cover, and cook over medium-low heat, turning once, until no longer pink inside, about 7-8 minutes. Transfer chicken to a serving platter. Option 1: Whisk vinegar and cornstarch, and then whisk the mixture into the pan; cook until thickened. Option 2: Whisk in vinegar and let the pan sauce reduce by 1/2; whisk in butter to finish. Pour onto chicken. Serve and prepare to take a comfort food nap afterwards.