Thursday, October 21, 2010

Chicken Piccata




I first ate this Italian classic, which name I occasionally used to hear before, at our neighbors and good friends Alex and Adam's home with great curiosity and pleasure. Since then it has become a regular and one of our favorites in our household, too.

Lemon, capers, parsley and butter: One of the best flavor combinations in the world... (Some piccata recipes also add white wine or garlic; I say there are plenty of other recipes where you can add those ingredients, just do not mess with the balanced flavors of this recipe...:)))
Below recipe is sort of my combination of Alex's and Giada De Laurentiis's recipes.


Ingredients: (Serves 4)

  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut in half and pounded into 1/4-inch thick cutlets
  • Salt
  • Ground black pepper
  • Flour, for dredging
  • 5 tablespoons butter (2+1+2)
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (2+1)
  • 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 1/4 cup brined capers
  • 1/3 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 8-12 oz. dry spaghetti or any other type dry long pasta (optional)


Directions:

  • Optional: Boil salted water in a large pot, add the spaghetti and cook for 10 minutes (or according to package instructions).
  • In the meantime, season chicken cutlets with salt and pepper on both sides. Dredge in flour and shake off excess.
  • In a large skillet over medium-high heat, melt 2 tablespoons butter with 2 tablespoons olive oil. When butter starts to sizzle, add 2 pieces of chicken and saute both sides for 3 minutes each. Transfer to a plate.
  • Melt 1 more tablespoon of butter and add 1 more tablespoon oil and saute the other 2 chicken pieces the same way, transfer to plate and cover to keep warm.
  • Into the pan add lemon juice, stock and capers. Bring to a boil, scraping up brown bits from the pan for extra flavor.
  • Lower the heat and return all the chicken to the pan (along with all the juices in the plate), and simmer for 4-5 minutes. Optional: Add the spaghetti into the pan and swirl to coat with the sauce. Transfer the chicken (and the spaghetti) to a platter.
  • Add the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and half of the parsley into the sauce in the pan and whisk. Pour sauce over chicken (and pasta) and garnish with remaining parsley.

Additional notes:

If you choose to have pasta w/ this chicken, be aware that the pasta will absorb most of the sauce and the pasta itself will also be delicious, but you may not have a lot of extra sauce left to serve with the chicken pieces. If you like extra sauce on your chicken, you may try to double the amount of the sauce ingredients (lemon juice, capers, parsley, chicken stock, butter), leaving the chicken and pasta amount the same as given above.

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