David's Recipe for Supreme de Volaille en Papillote

Don't let the name intimidate you. After all, "supreme de volaille" is just "chicken breast". A classical gourmet chicken recipe which demands nothing but patience.

Main Course, French

  • 16 squares of cooking parchment, about 12" by 12"
  • 8 chicken breasts, halved
  • 16 tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons or so olive oil for sauteeing the tomatoes
  • 32 long julienne strips zucchini or other summer squash. Cut them the whole length of the zucchini, if it fits the length of the chicken breasts.
  • 32 large pieces of mushrooms. How to cut them obviously depends on the kind of mushroom you use. If they are cap mushrooms, use 32 thick slices.
  • The leaves from several sprigs of fresh rosemary, broken into pieces. I've read that dried rosemary can also be used.
  1. Have all ingredients at room temperature.
  2. Fold the parchment squares in half. Cut them into heart shapes by trimming away the edges.
  3. Remove the green and black thingies from the two ends of the tomatoes, and cut in half. saute the tomatoes in the olive oil until tender.
  4. Arrange the parchment hearts and the ingredients on separate plates on a large table in front of you. Preheat the oven to high.
  5. For each half serving, place one heart on the table in front of you with the fold toward you.
  6. Place two tomato halves with some of the oily juice from the sauteeing near the fold, and otherwise centered.
  7. Place one half chicken breast on the tomatoes, so that its length follows the length of the heart.
  8. Place 2 strips of squash on the chicken breasts.
  9. Place 2 pieces of mushroom on the squash.
  10. Sprinkle some rosemary leaves over it all.
  11. Now start folding the cut edge of the parchment heart from the blunt end. Fold a straight length of it in about 1/4", then do the same again in the same place, so that you have a double fold. Then move on to the next stretch of the edge, changing your angle to follow the curve and making the new fold overlap the old one. Double this one also. Keep doing so for the whole length of the cut edge of the heart, to make a seal. When you get to the point at the tail of the heart, give it an extra fold. All of this is a lot easier than it sounds, though it takes a lot of time.
  12. Follow this procedure with all of the parchment hearts and ingredients. You will now have 16 leaf-shapes.
  13. Lay the first heart on a cookie sheet with rims with the long axis of the heart parallel to the short axis of the cookie sheet (in plain English, crosswise), with the fold next to the rim of the cookie sheet. Lay the next heart overlapping it so that the weight of the folded side of the heart will help keep the seal of the previous heart from opening during cooking. Do this with all of the leaf shapes. You may need more than one layer.
  14. Reduce the heat of the oven to medium, and let the breasts with their condiments steam inside the parchments for 1/2 hour. The individual servings will puff up with steam, and then deflate again when you remove them from the oven.
  15. Serve at least 2 to each person.

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