I am often haunted by memories of food once enjoyed at restaurants that closed long ago. When a restaurant shuts its doors, all the dishes once offered from that menu can be lost for ever. I miss the great food served at 61 On Teur, a favorite Midtown haunt on Madison Avenue at Morrison. Harry Nicholas owned On Teur until 1996 when Derk Meitzler and a few other investors took over at that location until 2003 under the name 61 On Teur. Harry later returned to the restaurant business with Harry’s Detour in Midtown and Downtown with many of the same dishes. With Harry no longer with us and both restaurants now closed, I long for dishes like Steak Saigon, Steak Henri, the Kingfield, Chicken Bangkok and my favorite – Chicken Newport.
The Greek spices, sautéed mushrooms in a lemon and white wine sauce, and the feta, parmesan and mozzarella cheeses in Chicken Newport create a rich, savory dish. When dining at On Teur, I frequently ordered this dish with a side of spanakopita.
Four years ago, I asked my friends on Facebook to help me recall the ingredients for Chicken Newport. With their good memories, I was able to reconstruct a close approximation that was rather tasty. After my first try, Valerie Meitzler, Derk’s wife, provided some missing details in the recipe that I first posted on Facebook. The corrected recipe appears below. At the time, Derk Meitzler was working for Local at the Overton Square location and featuring Chicken Newport as a Friday lunch special. I had the pleasure of eating Chicken Newport and met Derk.
I’m grateful to Valerie and Derk for their help in recreating this dish.
If anyone has leads on the following recipes from Harry’s or Derk’s legacy, please let me know: Steak Saigon, Steak Henri, The Kingfield, and Chicken Bangkok. I want to make these!
UPDATE: I discovered a new way to enhance the garlic flavor of this dish by marinating the chicken in a garlic paste called toom. Crush all the cloves in a head of garlic with a mortar and pestle with 1 tsp kosher salt, 3 tbsp olive and the juice of half a lemon. Toss the chicken in the paste until coated and let marinate for an hour.
- 1 lb Chicken tenders
- 1/2 tbsp Greek seasoning
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 tbsp oregano
- 8 cloves of garlic, chopped
- 2 8-oz packages of sliced white button mushrooms
- 1/3 cup dry white wine
- Dash of lemon juice concentrate
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
- 1/4 cup shredded parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 4 scallions, chopped (optional)
- 1/3 cup chopped parsley (optional)
- Rub Greek seasoning into chicken tenders. Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a large skillet in and then braise tenders until golden brown.
- Add chopped garlic, oregano, and mushrooms. Sauté for 8-10 minutes. While mushrooms are cooking chop your parsley and scallions (both add a nice flavor at the end).
- When most of the water is reduced from the mushrooms add white wine. Cook alcohol in chicken and mushroom mixture until wine reduces to a sauce. Be sure to deglaze the skillet with a wooden spatula or spoon.
- Mix all three cheeses together in a small bowl.
- Add a dash of lemon juice concentrate and butter to chicken and mushrooms in the skillet.
- When chicken and mushrooms are heated through, remove skillet from heat.
- Plate chicken. Sprinkle mozzarrella, parmesan and feta cheeses onto chicken.
- Stir parsley into mushrooms. Pour mushrooms and sauce onto chicken.
- Garnish with some sliced scallions if desired and serve.
Another version of this post first appeared in January 2013 on a blog I no longer maintain. The featured header image for this post comes from the Fredric Koeppel Restaurant and Menu Collection, Memphis and Shelby County Room, Memphis Public Library & Information Center.