Madiera Sauce with Chicken or Beef
The photograph below may not look very exciting, but it can be jazzed up for a dinner party by slicing the chicken, drizzling the sauce over, serving pretty veg etc etc – stay tuned for a more glam pic! The point here is the sauce. It does not matter if the accompaniment is not exciting; it will taste exciting because of the sauce.
So this can be made with chicken or beef, changing the stock addition accordingly. In fact, I have made this with beef stock and served it with chicken so it is not that important.
100g unsalted butter
Half an onion, skin on
about 5 button mushrooms
about 8 peppercorns
a bay leaf or thyme
150ml red wine
a nut of rich stock (please look out for notes on stock under storecupboard at a later date)
1. Sizzle 80g of the butter in a pan over a medium/high heat.
2. Add the herbs, onion face down, mushrooms and peppercorns.
3. Wait until the onion flesh is a deep brown but be careful that the butter does not burn; it does not matter if it browns though.
4. Add the wine and reduce it over a medium high heat, by half.
5. Add the madierra and reduce the liquid in the pan by half.
6. Add a knob of stock (you may use rich liquid stock if you do not have your own)
7. Bubble away for 5 more minutes or until the sauce coats the back of a wooden spoon.
8. Stir in the final knob of butter (20g)
It will keep just warmed, but be warned, if re heating, do not over heat as it will split.
9. Serve with sliced steak or with a chicken breast, smashed and whole or sliced – see below for a picture of how to smash chicken. It is a personal preference, smashing, seasoning and frying chicken in a light oil. If it is not yours, of course cook the chicken as you wish.
I strongly recommend that you add a carbohydrate such as a rice or potato addition because this sauce is rich and its deliciousness may be appreciated fully when combined. Alternatively, if you would like to reduce the strength of the sauce, add a little cream.