Monday, June 23, 2008

Chicken Piccata

This recipe for Chicken Piccata is inspired by a recipe from a friend of mine. I really wanted to use the McCormick Crusting Blends again, so I modified the original recipe a bit. If you don't want to use the Crusting Blends, then I recommend following Cynthia's recipe - found here, on her blog.

I served this wonderful chicken with some simple couscous. If you have never tried couscous, give it a shot! It's so quick and easy to prepare, you really have no excuse. Don't believe me? Here are the directions:
1. boil water (I used chicken broth instead)
2. stir in couscous; cover
3. remove from heat; let stand 5 minutes
4. fluff with fork & serve

See, I told you! My 6 year old even loved it. We called it "tiny rice" and he gobbled it up.

Chicken Piccata
serves 4

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/3 cup (or so) McCormick Crusting Blends (Garlic, Lemon & Rosemary flavor)
3-4 Tbsp vegetable oil

1 clove garlic, minced
1 cup chicken broth
2 lemons (slice one, juice the other to make 2 Tbsp juice)
1/2 tsp granulated sugar (optional)
2 tsp cornstarch
1 Tbsp water
2 Tbsp drained capers (optional)
3 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp fresh parsley, chopped

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Place a chicken breast in a ziplock bag, or between two layers of plastic wrap. Using a meat mallet (or other heavy object like a rolling pin) pound the chicken breast to thin it and flatten it. [click here to link to instructional video on pounding chicken] Repeat for each chicken breast.

Following the instructions on the McCormick Crusting Blends, brush each chicken breast with a bit of oil, coat with seasonings and bake in a 425 oven for 10-12 minutes or until cooked through and juices run clear. (The cooking time will vary depending on how thin you pound your chicken breasts.)

While chicken is baking, prepare the sauce:

In a large skillet, over medium-high heat, saute minced garlic in 1/4 tsp olive oil for 15 seconds or so. Add 1 cup chicken broth and let simmer for 3-4 minutes. In a small bowl, combine the cornstarch with 1 Tbsp water. Add to skillet, along with the lemon slices, 2 Tbsp lemon juice, and capers. Let simmer for 2-3 minutes, until sauce thickens a bit. Add butter and remove pan from heat. Stir until butter melts.

Remove chicken from oven, arrange on a serving dish and top with yummy lemon sauce (including pretty lemon slices!) Sprinkle with fresh chopped parsley and serve.

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