Years ago, I had the sheer delight of working with my friend Cesca, in the kitchen at The Kirkfield, hotel, Newton Le Willows. Cesca and I go back a long way, as we went to high school and catering college together. We’ve also, drunk a little too much wine, danced on tables and laughed a LOT together, she was one of my bridesmaids and we remain great friends to this day!
It was whilst working at the Kirkfield hotel that Cesca taught me how to make Chicken Jean Bart. Little did I know at the time, that this delicious creamy chicken dish, with its own truly unique flavour, thanks to a yummy combination of double cream, sherry, nutmeg, smoked bacon, and mushrooms, would eventually become my trademark dish and a firm favourite with family and friends.
Chicken Jean Bart is something I tend to make on special occasions, as it has a real sense of indulgence about it. So, not really an everyday meal, but instead something to make when you want to push the boat out and impress your pals with your culinary skills and spoil them a little!
Ingredients (serves 2)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
250g (9oz) white or chestnut mushrooms, washed and sliced
150g (5oz) dry cured smoked streaky bacon, cut into 1-inch strips
2 medium sized chicken breasts, butterflied
50ml cream sherry (I like Harveys Bristol Cream)
¼ freshly grated nutmeg (*ground nutmeg can be used instead)
1 heaped teaspoon demerara sugar
300ml double cream
Heat the vegetable oil in a large non-stick or heavy bottomed frying pan. Add the bacon and mushrooms to the pan and fry on a medium to high heat until the bacon is golden brown. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon and mushrooms into a dish and set to one side.
Return the pan to the heat. Pour in a touch more oil if you feel it’s needed, and then place the chicken breasts in the pan, cut side facing facing up. Cook for 1 minute on a medium to high heat, then turn the chicken breasts over, cover the pan with a lid or piece of foil and cook for 7-8 minutes on a low heat until cooked through.
Add the cooked bacon and mushrooms back to the pan.
Pour in the sherry and cook out for about 1 minute, before adding the sugar, grated nutmeg, and double cream.
Turn up the heat so the sauce is bubbling. Once the sauce has reduced and is slightly darker in colour and has a delicious looking sheen it’s done!
Check for seasoning, before serving up onto nice warm plates.
Recipe notes and suggestions:
Buttered baby new potatoes and green beans or long stem broccoli are the perfect thing to serve up with chicken Jean Bart, as they complement the flavour and cut through the richness of the sauce wonderfully!
I sometimes use mini chicken fillets for this recipe. It saves having to butterfly the chicken breast. The only thing is, mini chicken fillets don’t present as well on the plate.
Chicken Jean Bart is best enjoyed freshly made. It’s not something that reheats well.
Don’t forget to send me a picture or let me know how you get on if you if you get around to making this or any of the other recipes from my blog. Thanks so much!
*Check this product out to ensure no gluten containing ingredients or ‘may contain’ or ‘not suitable’ warnings on the pack. If in doubt, leave it out.