Friday, September 17, 2010

Chicken Piccata

I have been negligent in posting this recipe, but I assure you that it will be delicious! It is easy and tasty and easily expanded for company. For those who are gluten intolerant, you could use something else to coat the chicken before cooking it. Trader Joe's now has almond flour, and that might work (and up the nutritional factor!). Whatever you do, feel free to tweak it to your tastes. I began with a recipe from The Stuffed Cougar and adjusted it to my preferences. Add additional seasonings. Make it crispy! Do what you want. As long as it tastes good to you, great. I'd love to hear your tweaks!

Here it is, at long last...chicken piccata. This recipe makes one serving (just because it's easy quantities). Multiply as needed.

Oh, and this is not a lowfat recipe, but it surely is good. It's one of my treats!

Chicken Piccata
- 1 chicken breast (preferably thinly sliced or pounded to a nice thinness and not too big since you want it to cook quickly)
- enough flour to very lightly coat the chicken (about 1 tablespoon), seasoned with whatever you choose since it'll be really bland otherwise. (I recommend seasoned salt and garlic powder)
- bread crumbs to coat the chicken, with seasonings added, about 1 tablespoon (again, seasoned salt and garlic powder work nicely)
- 3 tablespoons butter (or less if you do not like butter, but I am partial to butter, and adjust the salt if you use unsalted)
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon dry white wine (make sure it's one you would drink and not swill)
- half a lemon (or more if it's not juicy since you need to end up with about a tablespoon)
- 1 tablespoon capers (more or less depending upon your taste for capers)

Start by letting the chicken come up to room temperature.

Melt 1 tablespoon of the butter in a skillet with the olive oil. If you're using enameled cast iron or the like, medium heat is what you need. If it's not, then you might have to go hotter in order to get a really good browning of the chicken.

Dredge the chicken lightly in the seasoned flour, shaking to remove the excess, then dredge in the seasoned bread crumbs. Getting the excess flour off is really important as too much makes the chicken gummy. Make sure to press the chicken into the crumbs so the breast is really well-coated.

When the butter is fully melted, place the chicken breast into the pan. Cook it for about 4 minutes on the first side, then flip and do about 3 minutes on the other side. Check for even browning. When both sides are nicely browned, remove the chicken from the pan.

Deglaze the pan with the white wine and lemon juice, scraping the browned, chickeney bits from the bottom of the skillet. Taste for seasoning and add as needed. Add one more tablespoon of butter and the capers and check for taste again (especially if you get some of the brine into the sauce). If needed, add the final tablespoon of butter to round out the sauce. It should taste rich, lemony but not too tart, and a bit buttery.

Add the chicken back to the pan to warm it through, turning it to coat it in the sauce. Serve it on a plate that can hold the sauce, or if you choose to serve with pasta or rice, in a bowl. Mangia!!!