Play-ing with Food

When I was a teenager, I performed in quite a few children’s theater productions. I played Bob Cratchit (A Christmas Carol), a Chinese prince, a badger, a juggler and many others. During that time there were two interesting interactions with food.

In one show, I played a dirty old miner. The show was a musical/comedy and since I although I wasn’t much of a singer, I had a solo song. I mainly talked my way through it and during the song I took a dirty handkerchief out of my pocket and gave it a quick snap and when it snapped, this brown, dusty cloud emerged and landed on the first three rows. What the audience didn’t know was I had placed a bit of cocoa powder in the handkerchief to simulate the dirt.

In another show, one based on the Tortoise and the Hare, a girl played the hare. In one scene, she comes across an unattended picnic basket that she opens and pulls out the various items. One of those is a big jar of mayonnaise. The hare opens up the jar, dips her paw into the jar and takes a mouthful of the mayo. On opening night the scene is playing out and the jar is opened. The paw goes in and pulls out a large amount of mayonnaise. The hare turns to the audience and speculates on what it tastes like.

The girl playing the hare had a severe egg allergy and her mother was sitting in the audience that night. As the hare starts to put the mayo into her mouth, the mom screams out “NO!”. The mayo had been replaced with whipped cream and the girl playing the hare decided to play a trick on her mom by not telling her. Luckily her dad was in on it and kept her mom from rushing the stage.


Chicken Breasts with Mushroom Sage Sauce

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The trick to this tasty dish? Mushrooms!

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Once again I chose to use boneless chicken thighs in place of breasts.

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Frying the chicken.

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Starting the sauce.

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Adding in the shrooms.

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Putting it all together.

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Savory and mouthwatering!

Chicken Breasts with Mushroom Sage Sauce



  • 3 Tbsp butter
  • 1/2 cup chopped shallots
  • 8-10 ounces mushrooms, cremini or shitake, thickly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 cup dry vermouth or dry white wine (such as Sauvignon Blanc)
  • 2/3 cup heavy whipping cream (light cream may curdle, so use heavy cream)
  • 3 Tbsp chopped fresh sage or 4 tsp dried
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breasts, pieces pounded to an even 1/4 inch to 1/3 inch thickness
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper


1 Melt butter in a large sauté pan on medium high heat. Add shallots and sauté for one minute. Add mushrooms and parsley and sauté for 5-10 more minutes, until the mushrooms have browned. If you are using unsalted butter, sprinkle on a pinch of salt. Add vermouth and deglaze the pan, scraping up any bits that may be sticking to the bottom of the pan. Stir in the cream. Bring to a boil and cook the sauce down until it is thick enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon (about 10 minutes).

2 While the sauce is reducing, heat olive oil in another large sauté pan on medium high heat. Sprinkle salt and pepper over both sides of the chicken breast cutlets. Add cutlets to pan and cook for about 3 minutes on each side, until browned and cooked through.

3 Stir in sage to sauce, season to taste with salt and pepper. Pour sauce over chicken to serve.

Serve alone (for low carb version) or with rice, mashed potatoes, or pasta (use gluten-free for gluten-free version). We used bow-tie pasta which worked great. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley.

Serves 4.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Categories: Chicken2, Low Carb, Main Dish 3, Recipes, Vegetable4, Wine

Author:The Ranting Chef

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3 Comments on “Play-ing with Food”

  1. July 18, 2014 at 11:18 am #

    This dish looks amazing! I’m so excited to make it for dinner this evening. It’s always great to prepare a new recipe when you already have all the ingredients on hand.


  2. July 18, 2014 at 11:27 am #

    Yum! That looks good. It just so happens I’ve got a ton of chicken thighs in my freezer. Maybe we’ll try this recipe out this weekend.


  3. July 18, 2014 at 6:21 pm #

    All I can say is now I have to start cooking. You made me hungry…great work!


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