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Watch this video to learn how to dry saute a piece of chicken and deglaze a pan, achieving ideal color and flavor.
Dry sauté is a quick way of sautéing with a small amount of fat. It's ideal for light and tender cuts of poultry, beef, and fish. For our basic setup, what we have is salt and pepper, minced shallots, of course our chicken breast, a little bit of flour, some oil to sauté in, chicken stock, and white wine to deglaze the pan.
The first thing we'll do is begin to warm up our pan. Once it becomes warm, we're going to place a little oil inside it - just a small amount, a trace amount, just barely enough to cover the bottom of our pan - and we're going to allow this to become nice and hot. Now we're going to begin to season our chicken breast. First a little salt, a little bit of pepper; then it goes into the flour, and what that really does is allow the chicken to become dry. We want to make sure we're very careful to bang off the excess flour.
Now we put the chicken into the pan. We make sure it's at a nice low temperature. As it first hits the pan, we start to see a little bit of gentle sizzling taking place. We don't want this at its highest setting right now. We start to hear the pan pick up its tempo, we start to hear it a little bit more. We're cooking our chicken breast until it has a nice golden brown color on the bottom side. Now that we have that, we're going to turn it over. We have some beautiful color development on our chicken, and that's going to give us some great flavor.
Now our chicken is cooked on both sides. We feel it; it's nice and firm. Now we're ready to start deglazing. Onto the plate it goes. We allow our pan to cool down just for a moment, and now we're going to add our shallots. Our shallots are going to cook very briefly; we don't want to brown them.
You notice there's a little bit of color in the bottom of our pan, known as a fond. A fond is simply a collection of proteins and natural juices that have come out. What we want to do next is add a little bit of wine to our pan to recapture that fond. This is where the deglazing takes place.
We add a little splash of wine and we can see the steam come off; we can see the fond, those trappings on the bottom, begin to come out, and they begin to become reconstituted into the sauce. We cook our wine down until it's just about dry. Now we're going to put a splash of chicken stock inside. Normally we let the sauce deglaze for about a minute or two.
Now our sauce looks like it's ready. It's getting a little bit thick, we've recaptured all our juices, so now we're going to
pour our sauce around our chicken breast. We've worked very hard to get that chicken breast to become golden brown, so when it comes to putting the sauce on we're going to pour the sauce around the chicken breast, so the chicken itself remains nice and firm and golden brown.