Food & Drink

Chicken Paillard Pasta Recipe with Garlic Tomato and White Wine-Butter Sauces | What’s Cooking

Sauteed chicken dinner recipe covered with an easy Italian tomato and flavorful white wine-butter sauce atop angel hair pasta. Nordstrom Recipe, photo by Jeff Powell.

Two delicious sauces form an unlikely duo in this dish that straddles the border between Italy and France. On the Italian side, a classic combo of tomatoes, basil and lots of garlic is simmered briefly to create a rustically chunky sauce that couldn’t be easier. It’s my new go-to for a quick pasta sauce that doesn’t cook out the fresh flavors of good-quality tomatoes. Representing France, shallots and thyme bathe in a super reduction of dry white wine. After straining, butter (enough to make Julia Child proud) gets whisked in to form an emulsified beurre blanc sauce that’s amped up with rosemary and our Roasted Garlic.

Chicken paillard—a ye-olde chef-y term for meat that is pounded thin—is tender and cooks in no time. To finish, the breasts get smothered in the tomato sauce with oyster mushrooms and spinach, and it’s all served on top of warm angel-hair pasta with the velvety white wine–butter sauce spooned at the side. Flavor-layered, completely satisfying and easy enough for a weeknight, there is nothing about this dish that disappoints.

Easy Italian tomato sauce with garlic, tomatoes and basil. Photo by Jeff Powell.

Sautéed Chicken Paillard with Angel Hair Pasta
From our Nordstrom Friends and Family Cookbook
(Serves 4)

Garlic Tomato Sauce
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
8 cloves garlic, cut into thin, even slices (about 1/4 cup)
2 cans (28 ounces each) whole Italian-style tomatoes in purée
1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh basil
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper



Le Creuset Dutch Ovens

1. To make the Garlic Tomato Sauce, in a 4-quart saucepan over medium-low heat, warm the oil and swirl to coat the bottom of the pan. Add the garlic and sauté, stirring constantly, until it turns light tan, about 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, including the purée, and simmer, stirring occasionally until the sauce thickens and the flavors meld (10 to 15 minutes). Using the back of a spoon or a potato masher, break up the whole tomatoes into chunky pieces. Add the basil and season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside until ready to use.


Easy Italian tomato sauce with garlic, tomatoes and basil. Photo by Jeff Powell.

Sautéed Chicken
4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (about 6 ounces each)
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper




2. Place the chicken breasts between 2 pieces of plastic wrap and, using the flat side of a meat mallet, pound them lightly until they are quite flat, about 1/4 inch thick. On a plate, stir together the flour, salt and pepper. Dredge the chicken, 1 piece at a time, in the flour mixture, pressing down on it lightly to coat evenly. Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet, cover and refrigerate until ready to sauté.


White Wine–Butter Sauce
2 shallots, thinly sliced
2 cups dry white wine
3 tablespoons heavy (whipping) cream
4 fresh thyme sprigs
1 bay leaf
4 black peppercorns
1/2 cup (1 stick) ice-cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
1 tablespoon roasted garlic (recipe)
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper





3. To make the White Wine–Butter Sauce, in a small saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the shallots, wine, cream, thyme, bay leaf and peppercorns. Bring to a simmer and cook, uncovered, until reduced to about 1/4 cup, 12 to 14 minutes. Strain the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve, reserving the liquid. Return the liquid to the pan, place over low heat and gradually stir in the cold butter, adding only a couple of cubes at a time while stirring constantly. When all of the butter is incorporated, add the rosemary and roasted garlic and season generously with salt and pepper. (This sauce needs to be well seasoned in order to stand up to the bold flavors of the tomato sauce.) Set aside and keep warm, but not over direct heat.


Le Creuset Skillets

Pasta and Final Assembly
1 tablespoon kosher salt, plus salt to taste
3/4 pound angel-hair pasta
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 pound oyster mushrooms, stems trimmed
4 ounces spinach, tough stems removed
1 1/2 cups Garlic Tomato Sauce
Freshly ground black pepper
1 lemon cut into wedges
4 fresh rosemary sprigs

4. Fill an 8- to 10-quart stockpot two-thirds full of water and bring to a boil over high heat. Add 1 tablespoon salt to the boiling water, then add pasta. Stir and cook the pasta until al dente (cooked through, but still slightly chewy), 6-8 minutes.

5. To sauté the chicken paillards, while the pasta is cooking, in a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat 3 tablespoons of the olive oil and swirl to coat the bottom of the pan. Add the chicken breasts and sauté until lightly browned on one side, 2 to 3 minutes. Turn the chicken over, add the mushrooms to the pan and sauté the mushrooms while the chicken cooks, about 2 minutes. Add the spinach and the Garlic Tomato Sauce, smothering the chicken and mushrooms with the sauce. Cook until the spinach is wilted but still bright green and the sauce is heated through, 2 to 3 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

6. To assemble the dish, drain the pasta in a colander but do not rinse it; return it to the pasta cooking pot. Toss the pasta with the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Arrange the pasta off to one side in warmed pasta bowls. Transfer 1 chicken breast to each bowl, leaning the chicken onto the pasta. Using a serving spoon, lay a stripe of the tomato-mushroom-spinach mixture across some of the pasta and some of the chicken. Spoon some of the White Wine–Butter Sauce into an open space in the bowls. Garnish each serving with a wedge of lemon and a sprig of rosemary.

 Nordstrom recipe for sauteed chicken breast covered with a classic Italian tomato and flavorful white wine-butter sauces atop angel hair pasta. Photo by Jeff Powell.

Try this recipe and others at a Nordstrom restaurant near you, and find more recipes to make at home in our What’s Cooking series and Nordstrom Cookbooks. Have a favorite dish or beverage from our restaurants or cookbooks that you’d like to see featured? Let us know in the comments!

—Jeff Powell