Friday, July 27, 2007

Savory and Sweet: Chicken Paillards with Lavendar Honey and Chevre

I adore dishes that combine the savory and the sweet. Don't know why. Maybe because it's just such a surprise.

I read somewhere that chevre and lavender honey go well together. So I tried it on during a cheese course for a French dinner. It was a revelation. The floral notes of the honey married with the sharp tang of the cheese and took it to a whole new level. And then I thought, "How else can I use this combination?" This was my answer to myself.

It should be noted that I have tons of lavender growing around my house. I like the idea of gardening but I'm terribly capricious about the actual work involved. Lavender, it turns out, is an ideal plant for me because it makes a big statement but aside from cutting the blossoms, it doesn't need any help from me to grow big and lavish and make the bees very happy.

This is a recipe for 6 but for obvious reasons it can easily be adapted to feed one person or a crowd. And it couldn't be easier.

Chicken Paillards with Lavender Honey and Chevre

1 c. clover honey
6-8 sprigs of lavender, plus more for garnish (make sure it's organic and pesticide free)
6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
6 oz. chevre, crumbled

Place honey and lavender in a saucepan and heat over low flame for 10 minutes.

Turn off heat and allow lavender to steep in the honey. This can be done well ahead of dinner time.

Place the chicken between 2 layers of plastic wrap and pound out to 1/4 inch thickness.

Heat large pan over medium high heat, add a couple T. olive oil and saute chicken breasts about 4 minutes on each side or until cooked through. (If making several batches, remove cooked chicken to an ovenproof plate and set aside in a low oven to keep warm).

Put one cooked paillard on each dinner plate, deglaze the saute pan with a little brandy (or dry sherry or white wine, whatever you have on hand) and spoon a little of the pan juices over each paillard. Then dress each paillard with 1-2 T of lavender honey and an ounce or so of the crumbled chevre.

Garnish with a sprig of lavender and serve.


Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

Oh.Yum! Do you happen to have an icecream maker? I once had home-made Lavender Honey icecream and I had an out of body experience. Seriously, that stuff is ambrosia!

Lorraine said...

Why, yes, Hat, I do. Don't suppose you have the recipe?

Anonymous said...

On it's way!

gina said...

I love dishes that do that too! And I love chevre! I think I have to make that dish. I could actually do that one on a weekenight. There may be hope for me yet.

Anonymous said...

ok - I have no idea of knowing if the recipe I just e-mailed you is the actual recipe of the ice cream I had and I like sending you random e-mails that may or may not be of any value.

Lorraine said...

Yippee, Hat. We'll give it a whirl when you come to dine and see if matches your recollection.

Gina: You could soooo do it on a weeknight. Easy peasy.