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I am Groot
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been slowly teaching myself how to cook different sauces, to try and come up with more variety in my cooking. I make a pretty mean alfredo, and while I have made a marsala cream sauce before, I've never made a true marsala before.

I took my first crack at it tonight, and like my major complaint with it in many restaurants, it came out watery. I didn't exactly follow any recipe--it always seems to work better when I look at the ingredients and instructions, and manage quantities as my eye, nose, and taste tell me--but I did kind of stick with the basics that I've seen. I started by browning the chicken (spiced up and rolled in flour) in butter, setting it aside, and reducing about a half a cup of marsala wine by half, along with some more butter. I dumped in a cup of chicken stock and brought it back to a boil. I then reduced the heat, tossed in some mushrooms and fresh garlic, and finished with the chicken and some more butter.

Well, it tasted great, but it was more like soup broth. From what I gather, the butter is supposed to be the thickening agent, but I have found that that didn't really work with the alfredo sauce, either. Cheese is what I used there--fresh grated romano and parmesan--but that is just going to completely overpower the delicate marsala.

I keep thinking that maybe I need more flower up front on the chicken, and a touch in the sauce at the same time. I know it will thicken it up, but I am afraid of turning it into a chunky gravy.

So, is anyone happy with the way this dish comes out for them? For what its worth, the chicken came out GREAT. Sitting in the sauce on low heat for about seven minutes made it come out incredibly tender. I just need the sauce to actually cling to the noodles.

Next, I think I am finally going to tackle a marenera sauce. I've always been intimidated by the idea for some reason, but I just caught Emeril making one while flipping through the channels, and he made it look so ridiculously easy.
 

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I MG.org salute you.
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2,501 Posts
A little more flour on the chicken would be a good start and then being sure to deglaze the pan to incorporate all the tasty frond would be the next step.

You might want to consider reducing the marsala more than half as well. You're only going to concentrate flavors and flash off water so I wouldn't be afraid to reduce it until it will nearly coat the back of a spoon. Then add the butter and chicken stock. I would even consider reducing the amount of chicken stock to keep the dish from getting too watery.

Sounds yummy. :drool:
 

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Premium Member
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^Good advice. As someone that made lots of marsala sauce, the first comment is that you didn't reduce it enough. Also, remember that "traditional" marsala has mushrooms in it, which help thicken it a bit.
 

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I am Groot
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
No one in my house eats mushrooms, and I was thinking that might have been the problem. Next time, I'll make sure to include them.
 

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Premium Member
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No one in my house eats mushrooms, and I was thinking that might have been the problem. Next time, I'll make sure to include them.
Not at my house you don't!

Seriously, I used to make it without them all the time. There's just an art to making sauces, and the more you practice, the better they'll turn out. In my mind, the only thing harder than sauces is actual good gravy, which is definitely art and not science. ;)
 

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I am Groot
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32,450 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Shit, I keep forgetting you can't eat anything with mushrooms, either. :lol: The whole point of trying this a few times before the July 4th trip is so I can make it and you can eat it. Alfredo is my signature dish, but the two tons of cheese I shove into it wouldn't make life happy for you.
 

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I appreciate the effort, but it's the lake house - cooking involves the grill and beer. I'd grill the eggs if I could. :lol:
 

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I am Groot
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32,450 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
:rofl:

Eh, I like cooking. I rarely get to cook for groups larger than three, so it is fun to me. Plus, Dawn and Jenna are baby cow loving tree huggers, so it will be an opportunity for me to cook veal. :yesway:
 

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Slow Money
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I appreciate the effort, but it's the lake house - cooking involves the grill and beer. I'd grill the eggs if I could. :lol:
cast iron pan on the grill dude. i made breakfast on the grill the other morning. 7 bone steak and bacon on the grill, and a cast iron pan with the eggs out there too
 

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Slow Money
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dave try throwing in a bit of okra. non traditional, and you can yoink it out, but it works WONDERS as a thickening agent, and is more manageable than other more powerful thickeners like file or bean gum, and much more appropriate than gelatin or a roux of some sort.
 

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Slow Money
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cast iron pan on the grill dude. i made breakfast on the grill the other morning. 7 bone steak and bacon on the grill, and a cast iron pan with the eggs out there too
dont close the lid btw though, smokey flavor + eggs = win. LOTS of smokey flavor + eggs = tastes like something that tastes really bad
 
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