Recipe: Chicken Cutlets with Quick Pan Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, thighs or tenders
  • Salt & freshly ground black pepper (I use sea salt)
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 Tablespoons butter (I use unsalted)
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock or vegetable stock (or water if you prefer)
  • 1/4 chopped fresh parsley leaves plus extra for garnish
  • 1 lemon, quartered, for serving (optional)

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 200°F/95°C.  Place the flour on a plate (I use an old pie pan) next to the stove.  Place each cutlet between 2 sheets of wax paper or plastic wrap and pound to a uniform thickness; blot dry with a paper towel and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  2. Place the oil and 2 tablespoons of the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat.  When the butter has melted, turn a piece of the chicken in the flour to coat it on all sides; shake off the excess.  Add the floured chicken to the pan, then repeat with the next piece; work in batches if necessary to avoid crowding the pan.
  3. Cook, adjusting the heat as necessary so that the fat is always bubbling but the chicken doesn’t burn.  After 1 1/2 to 2 minutes, rotate the chicken so that the outside edges are moved to the center and vice versa (do not flip them; you want the same side in contact with the fat).  When the bottom of each piece is brown, after about 3 to 4 minutes, turn them over.
  4. Cook on the second side, adjusting the heat as described in Step 3, until the chicken is firm to the touch but still a little pink inside, another 3-4 minutes.  To check for doneness, cut into a piece with a thin-bladed knife and take a peek.  Transfer the chicken to an ovenproof platter (again, I use a pie tin so as not to dirty too many extra dishes) and place in the oven to stay warm.
  5. Add the wine to the skillet, keeping the heat at medium-high.  Let it bubble away as you stir and scrape the bottom of the pan, until about half the wine is evaporated.  Pour in the chicken/vegetable stock (or water), continuing to stir until the liquid is thickened slightly and reduced to approximately 1/4 cup.  Add the remaining tablespoon of butter to the skillet, swirling the pan around until the butter melts, at this point turn off the heat.
  6. Remove the chicken from the oven.  If any juices have accumulated, add them to the skillet along with the 1/4 cup parsley and the chicken.  Stir, taste the sauce and adjust the seasoning if necessary.  Spoon the sauce over the chicken, garnish with the remaining parsley and serve with the lemon quarters (again, optional).

Makes: 4 servings  Prep Time: 5 minutes  Total Time: 20-30 minutes