Tonight’s dinner is a result of wandering around the local Whole Foods store since the only meat we had in the freezer was sausage, and we had some of that last night. I don’t know about you, but when they have the free samples out, especially in the cheese section, I always try them. So tonight’s sampling was a kalamata olive mixed with herbs and garlic (nice!) and a really delish sharp aged gouda cheese. The olives we left behind but the cheese definitely made it into the basket. The following dinner is very simple comfort food dialed up a tiny notch. Instead of using chicken breast, we picked up some super lean turkey breast at the store. Additionally, we grabbed some swiss chard. The butter beans, which I love for their large graphic quality and mild taste, I had in the cabinet from a trip to the store a few weeks ago. I try to keep a variety of canned beans in the house so I can add them to soups or pastas, etc. Here are the recipes:
For the Swiss Chard and Butter Beans with Grated Cheese:
3-4 cloves of garlic, lightly smashed
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 16oz can of butter beans, drained and rinsed
1 bunch of swiss chard, stems removed
1/4 cup chicken broth
salt & pepper to taste
Finely grated gouda (parmesan or asiago cheese would work here too)
Saute the garlic in the olive oil on medium heat until it starts to get lightly browned, then add the beans and allow them to saute for 1 minute. Add the chard leaves, cut down into medium sized pieces, a generous pinch of salt and the chicken broth. Cover and lower the heat. Allow to simmer covered until the chard is completely wilted (maybe 5-6 minutes). You can remove the cover at this point and allow the excess broth to simmer off. Once most of the moisture is gone, the dish is ready. Plate a portion of the bean and chard mix and then grate the cheese over top.
In the meantime, while the chard is simmering away, you can get the turkey together. We purchased a package of already sliced and cleaned turkey breast, which my husband pounded out until they were reasonably thin (maybe 1/4 inch thick). This allows the cutlets to cook faster and more evenly. The following is the recipe for the turkey cutlets with a vermouth pan sauce:
1 package turkey breast, pounded thin
1 cup all purpose flour
generous pinch Herbs de Provence
generous pinch of garlic salt
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon of butter + some for pan sauce (see below)
1/2 cup dry vermouth
Dredge the pounded out cutlets in the flour – I like to place the flour on a paper plate for easy cleanup after – and make sure there is an even dusting of flour over the entire cutlet. The flour helps the turkey stay nice and moist. Place the cutlets on a piece of wax paper (or any flat surface) and sprinkle one side with the garlic salt and herbs de provence. In the meantime, start the heat at medium high under a frying pan with the olive oil and butter in it. Once the butter is melted and bubbling (but not brown), gently add the cutlets to the pan. You may have to do them in batches depending on the size of your pan:
Saute the cutlets until they start to get brown on one side (3-4 minutes). Once they are nicely browned, flip the cutlets to allow them to brown on the other side. Once they are all nicely browned, remove the cutlets from the pan and repeat the process for any remaining cutlets. If you are doing more than 1 package of cutlets, you may have to add additional olive oil and butter to the pan to keep the cutlets from burning as they cook. Once all cutlets are finished, there should be a lot of good brown bits in the pan. Leaving the pan on medium high heat, immediately add the vermouth to deglaze the pan, stirring with a spoon and scraping up all those tasty brown bits to add flavor to the sauce. Add a pinch of salt and once the vermouth has cooked down some (maybe 2-3 minutes) add a teaspoon of butter (just a small amount) to finish the sauce. As soon as the butter is melted, turn off the heat and pour the sauce over the cutlets.
The vermouth adds a sweetness that goes very well with the somewhat more powerful herbs de provence and the butter at the end gives the sauce a bit more of a creamy feel. You could also use white wine to deglaze the pan or even just some chicken broth. The idea and the process are the same for both.