This was the main course for our entertaining this weekend. It was our friend Sarah’s birthday and I wanted to make something light, flavorful, and I hope, make a good presentation. I decided on Chicken Piccata. I really like the preparation The chicken is lightly floured (and if you need to be gluten free, easy substitutes for the flour) and then lightly browned in a skillet. Then a sauce, or braising liquid, is made of chicken stock and lemon with some capers. The chicken is finished by basting in this braising liquid. This cooking method adds both great flavor and poaches the chicken to make it super soft. This dish gets even better when you eat it the next night so be sure to make plenty extra.
Ingredients (adapted from Giada De Laurnetis):
5 skinless and boneless chicken breasts, butterflied and then cut in half horizontally
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
All-purpose flour, for dredging
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
5 tablespoons canola olive oil
1 cup fresh lemon juice
1 cup chicken stock
1/4 cup brined capers
1 package of linguini
Dredge chicken in flour and shake off excess. Heat a large iron skillet over medium high heat, melt 2 tablespoons of butter with 2 tablespoons canola oil. When butter is melted, start adding the chicken and cook 3 minutes per side.
Remove and transfer to plate. Cook the rest of the chicken and set aside as well.
Into the same skillet add the lemon juice, stock and capers with brine. Return to stove top and bring to boil, scraping up brown bits on the bottom of the pan. Add the salt and pepper.
Bring the stock to a simmer and return all the chicken to the pan and simmer for 5 minutes.
(I cooked mine ahead of time so I put the skillet into a 225 degree oven to keep warm.) Remove chicken to platter.
Add remaining 2 tablespoons butter to sauce and whisk vigorously. Cook for 1 – 2 minutes to thicken a little. Separately, boil a pot of water, When boiling, add salt and olive oil. Drop the pasta in the pot and cook for approximately 4 minutes. Drain the pasta. To serve, place a good helping of the pasta on the plate and top with the chicken. Then drop as much of the sauce as you like.