Pasquale Kitchen Express inspired pan grilled chicken, beef, veal or liver

Fast, tasty and healthy is a rare combination. One thing I always looked for is tender and flavorful meat dishes. If it is dry or tough, it does not matter how it tastes.

One technique to make the meat tender, is to use a combination of pan grilling and steam sautee. This is the technique used by the late chef Pasquale Carpino to make a four course meal in less than 25 minutes!

Here, I describe this technique, combined with my own experimenting and variations of that technique.

Note that the exact amounts for each ingredients do not really matter, and therefore I don't list exact numbers often. You should experiment with different ingredients and different amounts to see what works for you.

Ingredients

Some cooking vegetable oil (olive, canola or corn), a tablespoon or two.

Boneless skinless Chicken breasts or thighs, Veal, calf liver or Beef, 1 piece per person

Vegetables, use as many ingredients as you want, and remove whatever you don't have or don't want. These include:
1 or 2 large onions, or 3 or 4 small onions. You can use red onions for color
Bell peppers, use a mix of green, yellow and red if you want a colorful dish
2 medium Carrot
2 or 3 potatoes
A bunch of spinach, or kale or some broccoli.
Garlic, fresh, or dried

Green onions, one or two shoots

Spices:
Poultry seasoning, or Italian seasoning, or a mix of coriander, cardamom, cumin and allspice
Salt and pepper

Chicken, veal, beef or lamb broth. Check this page to make your own homemade broth.

Preparation

Cut the onions, and other vegetables into medium slices
Let the meat reach room temperature
Season the meat with salt and pepper and your spice mix
You do not need to marinade a day before or a few hours before

Pan Grilling, for browning

Add the oil into a pan on medium high
When droplets of water pop, place the meat in the pan, and brown on both sides, should be 5 or so minutes
Add the vegetables and let them cook for a bit, tossing them occasionally. If you are using different vegetables, then put those requiring more cooking first (e.g. carrots), and those which are faster cooking last.

Simmer

This is the most important step in the process, and the source for the tenderness and flavor for the dish:
Add the broth, and make sure you use it to deglaze the pan from all the browned residues caused by the Maillard reaction. This is where the flavor is.

Reduce the heat a bit, to medium
Cover the pan
Simmer for 10 to 15 minutes

Sauce

You can let the broth reduce and that would be your sauce.
Alternatively, you can just thicken it with a table spoon or two of flour, mixed with some cold broth so it would not form clumps.

Or you can have a separate pan with tomato paste, tomato puree and parsley with some spices, and add them to the meat to make a tomato sauce

Or you can add a cup of 35% cream to make it into a white sauce (not very healthy, but tasty)

Garnish

Add some green onions, parsley and/or fresh fennel on top before serving.

Variations

You can remove the vegetables after they have sautee from the pan to preserve their color, and then add them at the end. This would make the look more appealing but not change the taste.

You can also do the vegetables separately in another pan, using the same technique, to vary the length of cooking for each dish, then combine them at the end. Or you can serve them side by side, not combined. You will end with more pans to clean that way of course.

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