Sunday, November 16, 2008

Blueberry Sauce With Balsamic Vinegar And Thyme

And oh yeah, a chicken breast. But as my friend Susan says, The chicken is just the vehicle. Actually, she says that about the slice of salami that brings the spicy mustard to the lips, but it all means the same thing. The reason for the chicken breast at all is to bring this simple, delicious, oh-so-good-for-you herby purple sauce to your tongue.
These deep blue beauties were organically grown within a figurative stone's throw of my kitchen. Simona called me up the other day and asked if I wanted to buy a share in 30-pounds of blueberries. Well, that was a no-brainer and now 10-pounds of antioxident-rich blueberries are living in my freezer.

We have five blueberry bushes on our property. The berries ripen toward mid-July and finish at about mid-October. There are never enough to freeze for the winter because we go out to the bushes and graze until they're all gone. So having this surplus of blueberries on hand is like winning the lottery. (Hmmm. That may be an overstatement.)

I'm beginning with a simple savory sauce enhanced with balsamic vinegar and thyme which is a delightful embellishment for a sautéed chicken breast but would not be shabby at all atop a perfectly grilled salmon. You should know that already there's a fast-disappearing quart of blueberry ice cream in the freezer, subject for another post.

Christine's Blueberry Sauce with Balsamic Vinegar and Thyme
Christine's original recipe
Makes about 1 cup
1/2 cup chicken stock
1 heaping cup ripe blueberries (can be frozen)
1 tablespoon aged balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon dried thyme, crumbled
1 tablespoon cold butter
Pinch kosher salt
You can see how I prepare chicken breasts here. Follow the directions, if you wish, through removing the sautéed breasts from the pan . . .
With the skillet in which you sautéed the chicken breasts still over medium-high heat, pour in the chicken stock and stir the pan to get up all the browned bits.
Add the blueberries, balsamic vinegar and thyme and stir well.
When the berries begin to bubble, mash some of them lightly using a flat spatula. Don't mash all of them.
Turn the heat to medium-low and stir for 1 minute.
Stir in the cold butter until it is incorporated and the sauce has thickened slightly.
Remove from the heat and add a pinch of salt it needed.
Serve immediately over grilled or sautéed chicken or fish.

Weekend Herb Blogging, now under the management of Haalo of Cook (Almost) Anything, is being hosted this week by Heather of Diary of a Fanatic Foodie. Blueberries, being one of the world's healthiest foods, fit right in to this event. Check out Heather's blog late Sunday for the round-up.

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