Chicken Scaloppini with Herbaceous Orzo
Italian Heritage Month is about over, and I’ve got a couple more Italian recipes up the sleeve. This one is similar to Chicken Parmigiana, but a little easier to make in my opinion.
That said, it’s not quite as kid-friendly as capers and olives are little piquant for young palates. Luke and Kate both ate it, but preferred the parm. For me, this was superior and healthier by a longshot.
The Herbaceous Orzo is super simple and open to interpretation. Make it one time, and you’ll be hooked. It works well both warm or cold, and is a real find for people like me who get annoyed by the unwieldy nature of pastas like linguine, fettuncini and spaghettini.
As always, this dish isn’t complete without crusty Italian bread for sopping, and a nice bottle of pinot gris will balance this piquant dish. Sauvignon Blanc will do in a pinch.
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded thin
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 2 cloves garlic or 1 tablespoon of garlic powder
- 1 cup flour
- 1 tablespoon green olives, sliced and drained (pimientos are ok)
- 1 tablespoon capers, drained
- 6-8 sundried tomatoes, julienned
- 2 tablespoons dry white wine
- 1/2 cup chicken stock
- 2 tablespoons pure olive oil
- Between two sheets of wax paper, pound the chicken flat and even, about a 1/2-inch thick.
- Crush the garlic and mix with salt to make a paste. A mortar and pestle works great. Or you can use the flat side of a knife or meat tenderizer. The garlic should be the consistency of apple sauce.
- Smear the garlic paste on both sides of the chicken. If using powder season the breasts evenly with the salt, garlic powder and pepper.
- Heat oil in a wide, heavy pan at medium high heat. You might need to cook them in batches, which is fine.
- Spread the flour on a bowl or dish with a lip and lightly dredge chicken, dusting off.
- Fry chicken on both sides, 60 to 90 seconds.
- Deglaze pan with white wine, stir loosened bits from bottom of the pan.
- Add stock, mix briefly then stir in capers, olives and sun-dried tomatoes.
- Reduce heat and simmer another 2 to 4 minutes.
- Serve over Herbaceous Orzo
- One cup orzo pasta
- 1/2 cup frozen peas
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- Juice of half a lemon
- 4-6 green onions, sliced thin
- 2-4 tablespoons finely chopped Italian parsley leaves
- 3 tablespoons fresh basil leaves, julienned
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Fill a medium-sized pot half way with water and add about a tablespoon of water then bring to a boil
- Cook 7 to 8 minutes.
- Add peas, and cook another 60 to 90 seconds.
- Drain pasta and peas in a colander and rinse with cold water.
- Transfer to a bowl and mix remaining ingredients thoroughly.
Source: Dave Cathey