Sep 30, 2014

Crusted Chicken Breast Dinner with Sage Butter Sauce

The secret of breaded chicken breasts is to have a browned crust but still retain the juices. Boneless, skinned chicken breasts are great for crusting and cook quickly. Whole breasts are too big and the coating will burn before the chicken is cooked, so they must be halved lengthwise.
This recipe is for four servings, so if you double the recipe, be sure to sauté the chicken in two pans so the pieces are not touching.
When preparing the breasts, pound the pieces evenly to about 1/2-inch thick, doing so gently so your chicken pieces do not turn into cutlets. Best way is to pound the chicken in a plastic bag, dampened inside to prevent sticking and tearing. Use a smooth meat pounding tool. I learned this cuisine technique from Cuisine At Home.
Your crumbs are important, course rather than fine, which provides the correct texture. A crouton-type crust is better than a dry crumbly crust. If you choose to make your own crumbs, choose a bread that is holey rather than dense and does not have a hard crust. Cut the bread into cubes leaving the crust on. The crumbs will be different sizes. Dry crumbs on a baking sheet in a 200-degree oven until they are completely dried, but not toasted, about 10 to 15 minutes. Any extra crumbs can be frozen in a resealable bag.
COATING: First wet the chicken with egg whites and then roll in the crumbs. Course crumbs do not stick well, so scoop handfuls of crumbs, applying to each piece, then transfer the chicken to a rack set over a baking sheet. Air dry chicken in the refrigerator for 20 to 30 minutes to set the crumbs.
COOKING: Sauté chicken until golden brown and crisp on one side, then carefully flip pieces over. Transfer to a pan and preheated 450-degree oven to finish cooking. It only takes 8 to 10 minutes.
2 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (6-8 oz each), sliced in half.
2 egg whites
2 teaspoons cornstarch
juice from ½ lemon
1 cup coarse dry bread crumbs
1 tablespoon parsley, chopped
1 teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper or white pepper
minced zest of one lemon
3 tablespoons olive oil
½ cup grated Parmesan
3 tablespoons minced shallots
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
½ cup dry white wine
½ cup heavy cream
½ cup low-sodium chicken broth
1 teaspoon lemon juice
4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cubed
1-2 teaspoons sage
Salt, cayenne pepper to taste

  1. Preheat oven to 450-degrees.
  2. Sauté shallots in 1 tablespoon butter in a small saucepan over medium heat until soft, 2 to 3 minutes.
  3. Add wine, cream, broth, and lemon juice. Simmer until liquid is reduced by half, 8 to 10 minutes.
  4. Whisk in remaining 4 tablespoons butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, constantly stirring. Do not add more butter until previous is melted.
  5. Stir sage, salt, pepper into sauce. Keep warm until ready to serve. It can be kept warm in a hot water bath for about an hour or warming oven.
  6. Pound chicken breasts as previously described.
  7. Whisk egg whites, cornstarch, and lemon juice in shallow dish for the dip mixture.
  8. Add Parmesan to the crust mixture. Crust chicken, chill while air-drying, sauté until brown, and roast in 450-degree oven for 8 to 10 minutes.
  9. Serve chicken with sauce and roasted potatoes. Add vegetable of choice or a salad.
Dave's Kitchen provides an alternate recipe, via You-Tube ...

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