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Chicken Marvalasala and Papardelle with Rosemary Gravy


  • 3/4 pound papardelle pasta (wide ribbons – substitute fettuccine if this cut is unavailable to you)

  • 4 large, thin pieces boneless skinless chicken breast cutlets

  • Salt and pepper

  • 5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), divided

  • 2 large garlic cloves, crushed

  • 3 portobello mushroom caps, sliced

  • 24 shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and sliced

  • 4 tablespoons butter

  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste

  • 2 tablespoons minced rosemary (a couple of sprigs)

  • 2 tablespoons flour, plus some for dusting

  • 1 1/2 cups chicken stock (eyeball it)

  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce (eyeball it)

  • 2 tablespoons capers, drained

  • 1/2 cup Marsala wine

  • Grated Pecorino Romano cheese

  • A couple of handfuls of arugula, thinly sliced


Put a large pot of water on to boil for the pasta. When it comes up to a boil, salt the water and drop in the pasta. Cook to al dente. In the meantime, place the chicken cutlets between two pieces of plastic wrap (wax paper or parchment paper works, too). With the bottom of a skillet, gently pound the cutlets until they are pretty thin and even in thickness (this will help speed up the cooking process). 

Remove the cutlets from the plastic wrap, season them with salt and pepper and give them each a light dusting of flour on both sides. Heat a large nonstick skillet with two tablespoons EVOO, about two turns of the pan, over medium to medium-high heat. Add the chicken to the pan and brown the cutlets lightly on both sides. Remove to a platter and cover with foil to hold in the heat. To the same skillet, add two tablespoons EVOO and one clove of garlic. Cook the garlic one minute or so, then remove and add the mushrooms. Let the mushrooms brown evenly, until tender, about 8-10 minutes. While the mushrooms cook, start the gravy for the pasta. In a deep, medium-size skillet, melt two tablespoons butter with one tablespoon of EVOO, about one turn around the pan. Add remaining clove of crushed garlic and cook 1-2 minutes. Add the tomato paste and cook over medium heat for 1-2 minutes, so it develops a rich tomato-y flavor. 

Add rosemary, cook for one minute, then add the flour and whisk it into the tomato-butter. Cook flour for one minute, then whisk in the stock and Worcestershire sauce. Simmer to thicken, about five minutes. Season gravy with salt and pepper to your taste and remove the garlic clove, so you don't get a big mouth full of it! To the cooked mushrooms, add capers and Marsala and let reduce for one minute or so. Add two tablespoons of butter in small bits to finish the sauce, shaking the pan to incorporate it. Slide the chicken back into the sauce and warm. Drain the pasta and toss it with the gravy and a handful of cheese. Serve the pasta alongside Chicken Marvalasala, and scatter arugula across both the chicken and pasta to garnish.