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A light, yet delicious classic

By Amy Gauthier

Amy Gauthier is a mother living and working in Albert Lea. She loves to make new foods.

March — the time of year when I’m tired of my Crockpot,  but it’s still too cold to roll out the grill. Asparagus is everywhere. It’s not quite salad season, but the heavy meat and potatoes of winter are definitely behind us. It’s time to lighten things up, and so I present to you today: Chicken Piccata.

This is a very easy dish to prepare. The thinly sliced chicken cooks quickly, and the flour coating technique is something I am excited to try in other recipes. Chicken Piccata has a light, buttery lemon sauce that pairs so nicely with fresh asparagus! This was a delight to make and even more delightful to eat! My little one couldn’t get enough of it. We hope you enjoy the recipe as much as we did!

Ingredients

2 large lemons

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 1 1/2 pounds), preferably kosher or Bell and Evans, rinsed, dried thoroughly, trimmed of excess fat and prepared according to instructions below

Salt and ground black pepper

1/2 cup unbleached all-purpose flour

4 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 small shallot, minced (about 2 tablespoons) or 1 small garlic clove, minced (about 1 teaspoon)

1 cup chicken stock or canned low-sodium chicken broth

2 tablespoons small capers, drained

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley leaves

March — the time of year when I’m tired of my Crockpot,  but it’s still too cold to roll out the grill. Asparagus is everywhere. It’s not quite salad season, but the heavy meat and potatoes of winter are definitely behind us. It’s time to lighten things up, and so I present to you today: Chicken Piccata.

This is a very easy dish to prepare. The thinly sliced chicken cooks quickly, and the flour coating technique is something I am excited to try in other recipes. Chicken Piccata has a light, buttery lemon sauce that pairs so nicely with fresh asparagus! This was a delight to make and even more delightful to eat! My little one couldn’t get enough of it. We hope you enjoy the recipe as much as we did!

Directions

If you like, use thinly sliced cutlets available at many supermarkets. These cutlets don’t have any tenderloins and can be used as they are.

1. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position, set large heatproof plate on rack, and heat oven to 200° F.

2. Halve one lemon pole to pole. Trim ends from one half and cut crosswise into slices 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick; set aside. Juice remaining half and whole lemon to obtain 1/4 cup juice; reserve.

3. Sprinkle both sides of cutlets generously with salt and pepper. Measure flour into pie tin or shallow baking dish. Working one cutlet at a time, coat with flour and shake to remove excess.

4. Heat 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat until hot, about 2 minutes; add 2 tablespoons oil and swirl pan to coat. Lay half of chicken pieces in skillet. Sauté cutlets, without moving them, until lightly browned on first side, 2 to 2 1/2 minutes. Turn cutlets and cook until second side is lightly browned, 2 to 2 1/2 minutes longer. Remove pan from heat, and transfer cutlets to plate in oven. Add remaining oil and chicken pieces, and repeat.

5. Add shallot or garlic to now-empty skillet and return skillet to medium heat. Sauté until fragrant. Add stock and lemon slices, increase heat to high, and scrape skillet bottom with wooden spoon or spatula to loosen browned bits. Simmer until liquid reduces to about 1/3 cup, about 4 minutes. Add lemon juice and capers and simmer until sauce reduces again to 1/3 cup, about 1 minute. Remove pan from heat and swirl in butter until butter melts and thickens sauce; swirl in parsley.

Spoon sauce over chicken and serve immediately.

Serves 4. Recipe from Cooks Illustrated.