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Lemon-Sage Chicken and Foul Moudammus

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The Lemon-Sage Chicken recipe came from the April & May 2011 issue of Taste of Home magazine.

The Foul Moudammus (foul is pronounced “fool”) recipe came from the March 30, 2011, food section of the Akron Beacon Journal.

RARELY am I completely satisfied with the way a meal turns out – this is especially true of dishes I make for the first time. Often, anticipation and reality don’t match up, but when they do, it’s magical. This was one of those evenings when the world was in perfect harmony and the actual creation matched everything I hoped for.

The garlic and lemon that characterize both dishes gives continuity to the pairing; yet each dish has its own distinct, delicious flavor.

I made one minor change to the chicken dish. Because I didn’t have dried sage leaves on hand for the sauce, I substituted 1/2 teaspoon ground sage.

This was actually the second time I attempted the Foul Moudammus. The recipe calls for canned fava beans. The first time I prepared it I was unable to find canned fava beans at my grocery store. But they did stock dried fava beans, so I decided to give them a try.

Simply stated, the beans were underdone, despite following the cooking directions on the package. Too crunchy, and they had a “green” flavor. Not at all what I was looking for. However, the lemon/garlic/olive oil seasoning was promising, so I could not abandon the dream.

A few days later, I found the canned beans at Giant Eagle. (Foul Moudammus is Middle Eastern; I found the beans in that section of the international aisle.) This time, the results were delicious and everything I hoped for!

Lemon-Sage Chicken
Adapted from Taste of Home magazine
(Makes 4 servings)

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, about 1/2-inch thick (flatten if necessary)
3 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons olive oil

Sauce:
2 tablespoons chopped shallot
3 garlic cloves, minced

1/4 cup white wine
4 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
1/2 teaspoon ground sage (the original recipe called for 1 teaspoon dried sage leaves)
1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
3 tablespoons cold butter, cubed

Combine eggs, cheese and seasonings in shallow bowl. Place flour in another shallow bowl. Coat chicken in flour, then dip in egg mixture.

Heat oil in large skillet over medium-high heat; add chicken and brown on both sides. Transfer to greased 15″ x 10″ x 1″ baking pan. Bake, uncovered, at 375 degrees for 20 minutes.

Saute shallot in drippings until tender. Add garlic and cook 1 minute longer. Add wine, lemon juice, herbs and lemon peel; cook over medium heat until liquid is reduced by half. Add cream and cook until thickened, stirring occasionally. Add butter and stir until melted. Serve sauce over chicken.

Foul Moudammus:
Adapted from the Akron Beacon Journal
(Makes 4 servings)

1 15-oz. can fava beans, drained
1 large clove garlic
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
1/4 cup canned garbanzo beans, drained (l left out the garbanzo beans the second time I made this and did not miss them)
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley

Combine drained fava beans and 1 cup water in medium saucepan and place over high heat. Bring to a rolling boil; reduce heat to medium-low and cook, covered, for 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, combine garlic and salt in small bowl and mash to a pulp (the original recipe suggested using a pestle; I just used the back of a spoon). Add the lemon juice and 2 tablespoons of olive oil; mix well.

Remove beans from heat and drain. Fold the beans into the garlic mixture and combine thoroughly, lightly mashing a few of the beans to thicken the dish. Set aside, covered for 10 minutes.

Serve slightly warm or at room temperature. Top with garbanzo beans if desired. Sprinkle parsley and remaining olive oil over beans. Foul is traditionally served with a variation of hard boiled eggs, pita bread, tomato wedges or sliced cucumber. Since it was only a few days after Easter, I served it with hard-boiled eggs.

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