– 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
– Salt and freshly ground black pepper
– All-purpose flour, for dredging
– 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
– 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
– ⅓ cup fresh lemon juice (approximately 2 lemons)
– ½ cup chicken stock
– ¼ cup brined capers, rinsed
– ¼ cup fresh parsley, finely chopped, for garnish
– Lemon slices, for garnish
1. Begin this sublime culinary journey by tenderizing your chicken breasts until they reach an even thickness. Place each chicken breast between two sheets of plastic wrap and pound gently with a mallet or a rolling pin. Sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper to taste.
2. Now, let’s embark on the magical alchemy of flavors. Spread some all-purpose flour on a plate and gently dredge each chicken breast on both sides, shaking off any excess. This light coating will create a golden and silky texture that complements the sauce perfectly.
3. Heat 2 tablespoons of butter and olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Once the butter begins to gently sizzle, place the dredged chicken breasts into the pan and sauté for about 4 minutes on each side, or until they turn a gorgeous golden hue. Transfer the cooked chicken to a platter and tent it with foil to keep it warm.
4. Here comes the star of the show—the luscious lemony-butter sauce. In the same skillet, add the lemon juice, chicken stock, and capers. Bring the mixture to a gentle simmer, scraping any browned bits from the bottom of the pan, allowing the flavors to meld together. Simmer for about 5 minutes, until slightly reduced.
5. Remove the skillet from the heat and whisk in the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter to create a velvety sauce. Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper if needed.
6. Place the chicken breasts back into the skillet, spooning the succulent sauce over them. Simmer for 2-3 minutes, allowing the flavors to meld and the chicken to absorb some of the tangy goodness.
7. To serve, transfer the chicken piccata to a platter, drizzling any remaining sauce over the top. Sprinkle generously with fresh parsley and garnish with lemon slices for an enticing presentation. The vibrant aroma and colors will take you right back to the Sicilian shores.
Tips and Variations:
– For a twist on tradition, try substituting veal medallions for chicken breasts. The tender veal will add a layer of elegance to this classic dish.
– If you prefer a creamier sauce, whisk in a tablespoon or two of heavy cream just before adding the butter. Be sure to adjust the seasonings accordingly.
As you take your first bite, allow the burst of tangy lemon, the briny capers, and the tender chicken to transport you to Sicily’s picturesque coast. Chicken Piccata captures the essence of the region and its vibrant cuisine—it’s a dish that brings people together, sharing unforgettable moments and creating lasting memories. So join me as we savor every bite, celebrating the flavors of Sicily, right in the comfort of your own home. Buon appetito!