Chicken breasts cooked in a creamy saffron sauce with spinach deserves a place on your table! Explore the flavours of Tuscany through this delicious and very easy chicken recipe.
Add our Tuscan Panzanella Salad for an authentic feast!
Authentic Tuscan Chicken Recipe
Am I the only one who has a freezer full of chicken breasts? No? You are the same? Well I’ve got great news because today I am bringing you a delicious recipe, which comes from Tuscany. It is so incredibly simple and quick to make! No more than 30 minutes from start to finish.
This chicken recipe is inspired by a Tuscan cookbook, that was given to me years ago. It’s called Beaneaters and Bread Soup, Portraits and Recipes from Tuscany by Lori de Mori and Jason Lowe. I’ve taken the main idea from it but changed the recipe slightly to adapt to our taste.
This recipe is truly special mostly because of the creamy saffron sauce, that brings a unique taste and a gorgeous colour to the dish.
How to Make It
There are 4 easy steps involved in the process.
- Infuse the cream with saffron
- Brown the chicken breasts
- Make the sauce and simmer the chicken breasts in it for 15 minutes.
- Add the spinach at the very end
Creamy Saffron Sauce
As I mentioned earlier, the sauce is absolutely the star of this recipe. The main flavour and the stunning hue come from the saffron threads, which are used to infuse the cream.
Although not in the authentic recipe I’ve also added 2 cloves of garlic and spinach to the sauce. The sauce is thickened with flour but you can use cornstarch if you follow a gluten free diet.
There is also a full cup (250ml) of white wine, which gives this creamy sauce an acidity it needs to balance it out. If you prefer to leave the wine out, substitute with 1 cup of apple juice plus 1 tablespoon of white wine vinegar.
Despite featuring a slightly exotic ingredient like saffron, this sauce is very straightforward to make and very quick. Besides chicken, it is also delicious when served with fish, prawns or scallops.
What to Serve with this Italian Chicken Recipe
I know that the first thing that comes to mind is pasta. Italians would absolutely disapprove as this would be considered a second course. However, let’s throw caution to the wind do what feels right. This year we’ve had enough restrictions put on our lives. Let’s not add another one!
Plain rice, mashed potatoes, polenta or oven roasted potatoes are all great accompaniments to this tender and juicy chicken breast.
I would also serve some good quality crusty bread alongside. It’s perfect for the sauce!
Favourite Italian Chicken Recipes to try:
- 350ml/1 ½ cups single cream/heavy cream
- 1 tsp saffron threads
- 2 tbsp olive oil divided
- 4 chicken breasts, skinless and boneless
- salt and pepper
- 1-2 cloves garlic
- 2 tbsp flour
- 250ml/1 cup dry white wine
- 30g/1 cup spinach
- Infuse the cream with saffron by gently heating it in a saucepan for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper, brown them in olive oil on both sides until golden but not cooked all the way through for approximately 3-5 minutes on each side, remove to a separate plate and set aside till needed.
- Add 1 tbsp of olive oil to the pan, then minced garlic and cook over low heat for 20-30 seconds, then add the flour and mix until you have a paste. Deglaze the pan with white wine and let it reduce for 5 minutes. Then add the chicken back to the pan together with the infused cream, bring to a boil, then turn the heat down and let it simmer for 15 minutes. Add spinach and simmer for 5 minutes longer. Taste the sauce and add more salt if needed.