Family Meal

by Chef David Ferguson




Filtering by Tag: cranberry chutney

A Better Chicken Dinner Part 1: Pan Roasted Chicken Breast with Cranberry Chutney, Savory Onions, & Jus

Prep Time: 40 min    Cook Time:  20 min    Serves:  2

Chicken is the workhorse of the american dinner menu.  A go to. A staple.  Chicken is a fantastic and versatile protein but it often suffers from an image problem as a boring, bland and unimaginative dish.   With the A Better Chicken Dinner series, I  hope to change that perception with a dose of creativity and basic technique.  Because the weather has turned colder, this dish has plenty of big hearty flavors and indulgent textures.   This would go well with some hearty mashed potatoes or some oven roasted root vegetables to play off the sweetness of the chutney and onions.


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  In a medium sauce pot, pour 28 oz of chicken stock and set over medium heat to reduce.  Reserve the remaining half cup of stock.  

Remove the top and bottom of the onion and give it a medium dice.  Put a saute pan over med-low heat and add the tbs of vegetable oil and onions, salting liberally.  Allow the onions to cook down slowly as you finish the rest of your preparation, occasionally returning to the pan and deglazing with the remaining chicken stock as the onions stick to the pan.  Cook until tender and translucent.

For the chutney, cook shallots in oil in a 3-quart heavy saucepan over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until softened. Stir in remaining ingredients. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until berries just pop, 10 to 12 minutes, then pulse in a food processor to achieve desired texture.

Season both sides of the chicken liberally with salt and pepper.  Place a large saute pan over high heat and add a tablespoon of oil.  Make sure the oil and pan are sufficiently heated to make sure the chicken doesn't stick to the pan (look for slight wisps of smoke coming off the pan).  Place the pan in a preheated oven, turning after 5 minutes.  Remove chicken from oven after 10 minutes or once internal temperature reaches 160 degrees. Remove chicken from pan and reserve pan with drippings. 

Return to the reducing stock. Pour stock into the reserved chicken pan and use a wooden spoon to incorporate any drippings and continue to reduce over medium high heat until stock has thickened and will coat a spoon. Add the butter to the stock and reduce heat to keep to the sauce from breaking.  Season lightly with salt and pepper to taste, 





  • 2 (6 oz) chicken breast filet
  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • 1 (32 oz) carton unsalted chicken stock
  • 2 tbs coarse chopped parsley (for garnish)
  • 2 tbs vegetable oil
  • 1 tbs unsalted butter
  • salt & pepper to taste


  • 5 shallots (6 oz), coarsely chopped
  • 1 1/2 tbs vegetable oil
  • 1 (12-oz) bag fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 tsp minced peeled fresh ginger
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • /2 tsp black pepper