Marsala and Nutmeg Chicken

Marsala and Nutmeg Chicken

Marsala and Nutmeg Chicken

Marsala and Nutmeg Chicken

Marsala Chicken is one of those classic Italian dishes not to be forgotten.

Cooking with Marsala has been a favourite of mine since my early days of working in old school "a la carte" restaurants in the UK.
I remember many Saturday nights serving the dish straight from the chef's bubbling sauté pans, dying to get a teaspoon and taste the leftover sauce but scared to be caught by the chef himself, a fate to be withheld. When I did it was pure magic.

Marsala comes from Italy, hence the "classic Italian dish" part and is a fortified wine not dissimilar to Port, Sherry and Madeira.
While Marsala is widely drunk as an aperitif it is equally at home in the kitchen used in dishes such as Tiramisu, Zabaglione, Risotto and, of course, Chicken Marsala.

Most supermarkets should stock Marsala but if you have trouble try a specialist wine shop. 
Like the other fortified wines it doesn't last forever so once you open it you should use it within a couple of months.
Keep it in the fridge for freshness.

My version omits mushrooms which are included in the classic recipe and has a high content of Nutmeg which, I think, gives the dish an earthy depth. 
Feel free to add whatever suits your taste buds but I would suggest trying the recipe "as is" for the first time.

As with most of my dishes it's easy to make and doesn't have a huge list of ingredients.

I have used chicken thighs as I think they have great flavour but you can use breasts or filets if thighs aren't your thing.
If you use chicken on the bone (as per my photos) you will need to extend the cooking time.

Marsala and Nutmeg Chicken
Marsala and Nutmeg Chicken

For 4 people

3 tbsp Plain Flour
1 Pinch Ground Nutmeg
1 Pinch Ground Cinnamon
1 Pinch Paprika
1 pinch each Salt and Pepper
8 chicken thighs – boned

1 Medium Onion – finely chopped
2 Garlic Cloves – crushed with a small pinch of salt
1 tbsp Butter
2 tbsp Vegetable Oil
1 ½ tsp Ground Nutmeg
500ml Chicken Stock
500ml Marsala Wine
3 tbsp Crème Fraiche
1 tbsp fresh Parsley – chopped
Salt and Pepper for seasoning

The Mix: 

In a large bowl mix together flour, pinch of Nutmeg, Cinnamon, Paprika, salt and pepper
Coat each chicken thigh with flour, shake off excess and keep flour for later use
Place chicken aside on a plate

In an flame and oven proof casserole dish place oil and butter and heat until sizzling
Turn heat to low/medium then add chicken, skin side down, and allow to colour for a few minutes before turning
Once browned remove chicken and leave to the side

Turn heat to low, scrape bottom of pan with a spatular, add onion, garlic and stir well
Put lid on and allow to cook for 2 minutes
Keeping heat low, add remains of flour to onion mix and stir well - be careful not to let mixture burn on bottom of pan, you may have to temporarily remove from heat
Turn heat to medium/high then add chicken stock and Marsala
Using a whisk stir well to disperse lumps of flour then stir continuously until liquid starts to boil

Once lightly boiling add Crème Fraiche and whisk in
Taste sauce and adjust seasoning to your preferences

Add chicken pieces to the dish, pop the lid on and put in oven (180c or 160c fan assist) for 45 minutes

Once cooked it’s ready to serve 
Serve with Polenta or Egg noodles sprinkled liberally with chopped parsley

Drink This: 

Try this Italian Pinot Grigio Rosé

Pinot Grigio Rose


Loving the Nutmeg Mill!

Thanks Di - great recipe …. just when today I am fasting .. next week I will cook for my guests :)

di's picture

Thanks Suz - my nutmeg mill is on order!

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