Chicken and Squash Gratin with Taleggio
Rich and indulgent comfort food to brighten the long, cold days of Winter. Sweet potato and squash add colour whilst the Taleggio lifts the dish to unctuous and irresistible.
1 sweet potato
Half a butternut squash (or pumpkin)
2 tbsps. oil
3 chicken breasts
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic
100ml dry vermouth (or white wine/chicken stock)
200ml double cream
Handful panko crumbs
Handful sesame seeds
Handful freshly grated parmesan
Oven 200c, 180c fan, gas 6
Peel the squash and sweet potato, cut into chunks, roll in a little oil and oven roast for about 30 minutes until soft. Transfer to an ovenproof dish large enough to take the chicken as well. Keep to one side.
Warm the remaining oil in a frying pan and gently cook the chicken in it for 8 to 10 minutes. Try not to brown the breasts too much; they will be covered in sauce and browning tends to toughen them. Rest to one side when the breasts are cooked.
Put the chopped onions in the chicken pan with a pinch of salt (add more oil only if you need it) and gently fry the onion until it is opaque. Grate and stir in the garlic.
Add the vermouth and bubble hard to reduce by at least half, perhaps a little more
When the vermouth has reduced, add the cream and bubble this too until the sauce becomes fairly thick. This should happen quite quickly. Taste and season the sauce.
Thickly slice the rested chicken breasts and arrange the slices on top of the squash and sweet potato in their ovenproof dish, then pour the sauce over the lot.
Slice the Taleggio as thinly as you can and spread or dot it all over the top.
Mix together the panko crumbs, sesame seeds and grated parmesan and sprinkle over the gratin
Bake in the oven 200c (see above) for about 30 minutes until golden and bubbling.
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