The Foodie Files, Vol. 1: Phil Burnham

Starting today, I’m launching The Foodie Files – a new series of food videos, highlighting Maine chefs, Maine food and how Mainers eat. For the first episode, I found it appropriate to start with the guy that got me into appreciating food in the first place: my dad, Phil Burnham. He’s been in the restaurant business for 37 years, ever since he graduated from the Culinary Institute of America in 1975. He’s been a cook, a teacher and an executive chef all over New England, and he’s currently the head of the kitchen at Penobscot Shores Retirement Community in Belfast. I grew up on expertly prepared seafood, gorgeous grilled vegetables and meat, and the cuisine that may be closest to my Dad’s heart: Italian cooking, like Chicken Marsala, a staple of his kitchen. Watch this video, and you’ll see why I’m the giant food nerd that I am today. Thanks, Dad!

Chicken Scaloppine a la Marsala

Serves 4

1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into cutlets and pounded thin

8 oz crimini or portobello mushrooms

4 large cloves garlic, chopped

1/2 cup flour, seasoned with salt and pepper

2 tablespoons chopped parsley

1/2 cup olive oil

1 cup marsala wine

1 cup chicken stock

4 oz prosciutto (optional)

Heat the oil in a very large skillet on medium-high heat. Dredge the thinly pounded chicken cutlets in the seasoned flour and fry several minutes on each side, until it is golden brown. Add the mushrooms and let them sweat for a few minutes, tossing to coat in oil, and then add the garlic. As soon as the garlic begins to cook, add the wine, and a minute later, add the chicken stock. Stir and allow sauce to thicken. Add parsley, and then add prosciutto, if you wish. Serve over rice, mashed potatoes or polenta, with a side of sauteed spinach.

Emily Burnham

About Emily Burnham

Emily Burnham is a Maine native, UMaine graduate, proud Bangorian and a writer for the Bangor Daily News, where she's worked since 2004. She reports on everything from local bands to local food to all the cool things going on in the Greater Bangor area. In her quest for stories, she's seen countless concerts and plays, been lobster fishing, interviewed celebrities, hung out with water buffalo and played in a ukulele orchestra. She's interested in everything that happens in Maine.