I have been meaning to post this recipe for a while, but for some reason I never got around to taking a picture of it. We have talked a lot about flavor combinations at school and what makes a dish work. The three components that seem to come back in various forms are a mix of saltiness, fat and acidic flavors. Chicken piccata makes perfect use of all three: saltiness with capers, fat with butter and acid with lemon. This really is one of my favorite dishes. It's so simple to make, and also works great with fish.
I have moved on to the pasty section of the kitchen, so I will be posting about those adventures very soon. I have a newfound appreciation for kitchen life everyday. It definitely is one of the most physical jobs I have ever had, at times one of the most stressful, but generally one of the most pleasing. There is just something so special about spending time concocting flavors and aromas for the unique goal of pleasing.
Recipe for two (adapted from the Barefoot Contessa)
2 split (1 whole) boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tablespoon water
3/4 cup seasoned dry bread crumbs
Good olive oil
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature, divided
1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (2 lemons)
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 tablespoons of capers, washed and drained
Sliced lemon, for serving
2 teaspoons of dried oregano
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
Place each chicken breast between 2 sheets of parchment paper or plastic wrap and pound out to 1/4-inch thick. Sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper and dried oregano.
Mix the flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper in a shallow plate. In a second plate, beat the egg and 1/2 tablespoon of water together. Place the bread crumbs on a third plate. Dip each chicken breast first in the flour, shake off the excess, and then dip in the egg and bread crumb mixtures.
Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large saute pan over medium to medium-low heat. Add the chicken breasts and cook for 2 minutes on each side, until browned. Place them on the sheet pan and allow them to bake for 5 to 10 minutes while you make the sauce.
For the sauce, wipe out the saute pan with a dry paper towel. Over medium heat, melt 1 tablespoon of the butter and then add the lemon juice, wine, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Boil over high heat until reduced in half, about 2 minutes. Off the heat, add the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and the capers, and swirl to combine. Pour the sauce over the chicken breasts. Enjoy!