Aglio e Olio – Skillet Chicken Breasts
Author: Lidia Bastianich (loved by Paige Whiting)
Recipe type: Main, Dinner, Chicken
- 6 chicken breast halves, skinless and boneless (about 2 pounds)
- ¾ teaspoon salt, plus more as needed
- ½ cup flour, for dredging the chicken
- ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 8 or more big garlic cloves, sliced
- ¼ teaspoon pepperoncino (I leave this out since I didn’t want it too spicy)
- 3 tablespoons tiny capers in brine, drained
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 cup Chicken Broth or Vegetable Broth (homemade broth is of course recommended)
- 1 tablespoon fine dry bread crumbs
- 3 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
- Trim the chicken-breast halves
- Sprinkle both sides of the breasts with salt, using about ½ teaspoon in all. Spread the flour on a piece of wax paper and press and toss each breast to coat lightly on all surfaces.
- Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil and all the butter in the pan over medium heat. When the butter is almost completely melted, lay the breasts in the pan, with space between them. Let them cook in place without moving them, until they are sizzling. After about 2 minutes lift the first breast you put in the pan and check the underside. You want it to be light brown. Cook longer if needed, then turn all the breasts over when they’ve just begun to color.
- Quickly scatter all the garlic slices into the spaces between the chicken pieces, turn the heat up slightly, shake the pan, and stir the garlic slices around in the hot fat so they separate. After a minute, when the garlic has begun to sizzle, sprinkle the peperoncino flakes in a hot spot; toast for a minute, then spill the capers in several hot spots around the pan. Give the skillet a few good shakes to distribute the seasonings, and run the hot juices all around the breasts.
- Raise the heat another notch. When everything is sizzling hard, pour the wine vinegar into the open spaces and shake the pan to spread it. Let the vinegar sizzle and reduce for ½ a minute or so, then pour in the broth.
- Cook at full blast now, quickly bringing the liquid to a boil. As it cooks, drizzle the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil all around the pan, and sprinkle another ¼ teaspoon of salt. Let the sauce bubble and reduce for a couple of minutes, shaking the skillet frequently, then sprinkle the bread crumbs into the sauce (not on the chicken) and stir and shake to mix. Within a couple minutes the bread crumbs will thicken the sauce visibly; cookshaking the skillet, until it has the consistence you like. Turn off the heat, scatter the parsley over everything and shake the skillet again.
- Serve right away.
Once you chop and measure everything, it cooks really fast. Because of this, I make all my side dishes before I start cooking this.
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