Mr. Spock’s Seared Chicken & Pan Sauce

This is one of the first dishes I really learned to cook with. The technique is great because you can vary so much to suit your taste. Try substituting pork loin or another cut of meat. You can experiment with all sorts of sauce flavourings. Try adding fresh ground nutmeg, lemon zest, green pepper corns, or even some curry.

2 chicken breasts
2 tbsp of vegetable oil or butter
salt and pepper
2-3 cups chicken stock
fresh herb of choice (thyme (couple sprigs), sage (couple leaves) or rosemary (third of a sprig) all work well)
1 heaping tsp of corn starch

Preheat oven to 350F.

Heat oil or butter over medium-high heat in a small steel or cast iron pan (no nonstick please). Heat the pan until a drop of water sizzles vigorously in the pan. Sprinkle a small amount of salt and pepper on each side of the chicken breasts.

Sear the chicken breasts in the pan on both sides until golden brown. Remove the chicken and immediately add chicken stock to the pan. Be careful or else the chicken bits will burn if you are too slow! Place the chicken breasts in an oven proof dish and pop in the oven until the internal temperature reaches 75C or 170F.


Meanwhile, once the chicken stock starts bubbling add your herb of choice and season with salt and pepper. Take half a cup of chicken stock and completely dissolve a heaping teaspoon of corn starch in the liquid. Pour the resulting slurry into the simmering pan, whisking constantly. The mixture will clarify and thicken after heating. Reduce the sauce to desired thickness or until the chicken is done.

NOTE: Mr. Spock likes to cut the chicken on a bias (diagonally) so when you pour the sauce over top it seeps inside.