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Velvet Chicken Breast with Mustard Sauce


Chinese technique yields a moist chicken without all that fat.
It's called velveting. Make a quick marinade by whisking together egg whites and cornstarch--let the chicken bathe in it. Instead of a dry and cottony texture, you will get one that is velvety. You can do it with chicken, pork or fish. Cut into cubes or strips. The quick frying locks in the moisture, even if the meat is simmered in a sauce.

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  • 4 small skinless, boneless chicken breasts.
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 egg whites
  • 4 Tbsp. cornstarch
  • 2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • 2 Tbsp. whole-grain Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp. dried mustard
  • 1 Tbsp. grated horseradish
  • 1/4 cup Creme fraiche, or sour cream if you can't find the creme fraiche.
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 3 Tbsp. melted butter or vegetable oil.
  • 1 tsp. roughly chopped thyme leaves
  • 2 Tbsp. snipped chives.



Step 1

Season chicken generously on both sides with salt and pepper.
Velvet the chicken: In a medium size mixing bowl, whisk egg whites until frothy, when whisk in cornstarch until lump free. Add chicken breasts and coat well with mixture. Then cover and marinate for 30 minutes. (Chicken may also be marinated several hours in frig.
Meanwhile, in a small mixing bowl, stir together the mustard's, horseradish and creme fraiche. set aside.
Put butter or oil in a skillet over medium heat. Lay chicken in the pan and saute very lightly for 30 seconds a side without browning. Remove chicken and blot on paper towels. Discard remaining oil and wipe pan.
Return skillet to stove and add mustard and creme fraiche mixture and chicken broth. Whisk together to make a thin sauce and bring to a gentle simmer. Add chicken and simmer for 1 minute. turn breasts over, cover pan and simmer for 2 minutes. Turn off heat and leave covered for 1 minute more.
Transfer chicken to a warm platter. Bring sauce to a boil, add chopped thyme and reduce until slightly thickened. Spoons sauce over chicken, sprinkle with chives and serve.

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