Recipe: Turkey Scaloppine with Dried Morels

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This classic dish used to be made with veal. Nowadays, it is hard to find in supermarkets and very expensive. Turkey is an inexpensive alternative that is tender if not overcooked.

Dried morels are more flavorful than fresh and the soaking liquid used to reconstitute them adds intensity to the sauce. I usually rinse the morels briefly under running water to remove any surface dust or dirt before I put them in a bowl to soak. Take care to pour them and their soaking water into the skillets slowly, and discard the last few tablespoons of liquid, along with any sand or dirt that has settled to the bottom. You can substitute other dried mushrooms, like porcini (cèpes) or shiitakes.

4 servings

Rinse the morels briefly under cool running water and put them in a small bowl. Pour the tepid water over them and press a piece of aluminum foil on top, pushing it down into the mushrooms to keep them immersed in the water.

Divide the butter and oil between two skillets large enough to accommodate the scaloppine without overlapping. While you heat the butter and oil over high heat, sprinkle the scaloppine with about half the salt and pepper and dip them very lightly into the flour. Divide the scaloppine between the skillets and sauté them over high heat for about 1 1/2 minutes on each side. Transfer to a serving plate.

Divide the shallots or onion between the two skillets and sauté for about 30 seconds. Add the mushrooms and soaking liquid, leaving behind any sand or dirt on the bottom. Boil for a few seconds to deglaze, then combine the mixture in one of the skillets. Continue cooking, uncovered, over high heat for 4 to 5 minutes, or until the liquid is almost completely gone. Add the vermouth and cook for another minute. Add the cream and boil for a couple of minutes to reduce and thicken the sauce. Add the remaining salt and pepper and any liquid that has come out of the scaloppine.

Arrange 1 or 2 scaloppine on each of four warmed plates, then spoon the sauce and mushrooms on top of the scaloppine. Sprinkle on the tarragon or chives and serve.

Episode 220: Breaking with Tradition

Jacques breaks with tradition to make a Skillet Apple Charlotte cooked in a single pan. From a jar of mayonnaise, he makes a dressing -- that's his alone -- to serve with eggs, anchovies, and tomatoes in a Harlequin Salad. And when veal isn't an option for the classic scaloppine, Jacques chooses turkey breast for a twist in Turkey Scallopini with Morels served with Middle Eastern Couscous with Saffron.

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Minute Recipe: Chicken Persillade

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When I'm in the supermarket and hear an announcement that there are chickens fresh out of the rotisserie, I buy one. Plump, brown, shiny, juicy, and eminently appetizing, these chickens are good cut into pieces and served on romaine or Boston lettuce with my personal enhancement, a persillade, on top.

Separate the leaves of packaged, prewashed organic romaine or Boston lettuce. Spread them out on a large platter. Sprinkle with about 2 tablespoons olive oil, 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice, salt, and freshly ground black pepper. Using kitchen shears, cut the rotisserie chicken into pieces, bones and all, and arrange on the salad. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil and 1 tablespoon butter in a skillet. When hot, add 2 tablespoons chopped shallots and 1 tablespoon chopped garlic. Cook for about 10 seconds. Add about 3 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh parsley, cook for 20 to 30 seconds longer, and stir in the juice from the chicken container. Spoon over the chicken pieces. Serve.

4 to 6 main-course servings