Sunday, March 9, 2008

Chicken Scallopine with Saffron Cream Sauce

***If you had asked me what saffron threads were about 2 weeks ago, I would have said, "I have no idea!" I saw Giada make this dish last week, and I was curious to find out exactly what they were. I had no idea that they were so rare or expensive until I tried to find them for this dish. I had to go to several different grocery stores, and I finally found some at The Fresh Market. I lucked out and bought the last jar they had. The saffron added the prettiest orange color to the sauce. The flavor was great without being too powerful....Brad and I both really loved this recipe. I've got some additional information about what exactly saffron is at the bottom of this post.***

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 pound chicken cutlets (scallopine)
2 shallots, sliced
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 cup white wine
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1/4 teaspoon saffron threads
1/2 cup heavy cream
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Sliced Shallots

Warm the olive oil in a large skillet over high heat. Season the chicken cutlets with salt and pepper. Cook the chicken until golden and cooked through, about 2 to 3 minutes per side.

Transfer the chicken to serving plate and tent with foil to keep warm. Turn the heat to medium, add the shallot and the garlic and cook until tender, about 2 minutes.

Deglaze the pan with the white wine. Using a wooden spoon, scrape all the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Cook until the wine is almost evaporated. Add the chicken broth and saffron threads, bring to a simmer and reduce for 10 minutes. Add the cream, salt, and pepper. Stir to combine and simmer for 1 minute to blend the flavors. Pour the sauce over the chicken. Sprinkle with parsley and serve immediately.

Source: Giada DeLaurentiis -



"Saffron, the yellow-orange stigmas from a small purple saffron crocus (Crocus sativus), is the world's most expensive spice. That's because each flower provides only three red stigmas, and it takes approximately 14,000 of these tiny threads for each ounce of saffron. One ounce of saffron equals the stigmas from approximately 5,000 crocuses. It takes an acre of flowers to produce a pound.

The tiny red threads of saffron must be handpicked from the center of the crocus flower. They leave behind the yellow stamens which have no taste. This spice comes either powdered or in threads (the whole stigmas)."

Crocus Flower


Deborah said...

I have never made anything with saffron, although I've seen some gorgeous dishes (yours included!) that have been made with it. I just need to take the plunge!

Steph said...

I've always wanted to cook with saffron, but it's almost intimidating to me...crazy I know! I should definitely try this out though! I love your blog!

Alexis B said...

This tasted amazing. The best sauce I have ever made.