Make Chicken Piccata!
Wait, that’s not the right expression, is it? But if life is handing you lemons and ice cold lemonade just doesn’t seem appropriate quite yet because it’s still SNOWING outside, then maybe chicken piccata is a good second choice.
Not that life has been handing me lemons lately or anything. Far from it. The weather is the only lemon I can think of right now. If I had to pick my absolute LEAST favorite month of the entire year, I think March might be it. It is so dreary and damp. It’s cold and it still snows. And if it’s warmed up enough to melt the snow all that’s left behind is a dull, gray, slushy mess. The grass is gray, the trees are gray, the sky is gray. Hell, even the CARS are gray! Ugh. I HATE it. At least in January and February, you are knee-deep in winter and any terrible, cold, snowy weather is expected and you just deal. This is the Midwest after all….nothing about January or February is going to change anytime soon. But then in creeps March, and you get that tiny glimmer of hope that maybe it’s finally over, that spring may finally be here. You even get a couple of those teaser days where it warms up a bit….and then KA-POW! Winter comes back in full force. March is depressing that way. FINALLY in April, you can start seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, baseball season starts, the sun comes out a bit more, toward the end the sturdier trees start to bud a bit, but I always have a tough time getting through March. It just can’t come in like a lion and out like a lamb (an angry, mean lamb that head butts you) fast enough.
Seriously, the people that loathe and complain about winter in the Midwest as much as I do have long since left to make new lives in the Sun Belt somewhere. I’m the only chump that sticks around. Ha. I’ll never leave either, that’s what makes all this bellyaching a complete and total waste of time. Oh well…
ANYWAY, since I’m still in warm winter comfort food mode, I decided to try a super easy recipe for Chicken Piccata I spotted on allrecipes.com, mostly because I already had everything on hand. I’ve said it before, but I love all things lemon. A long time ago, I knew someone who peeled lemons and ate them like oranges. Can you imagine? YOWZA! Now, I don’t love them THAT much, but putting them in just about everything I can think of is probably the next closest thing.
This came out totally delicious. The sauce was so light and flavorful and the chicken was extra juicy. Mmmmm. I made some changes to the original recipe, which are reflected below. I swapped out veggie oil for olive oil (although I kept the butter…live a little on a Sunday night, right?) and doubled the amount of lemon juice and white wine so it would be more saucy. I also added capers because you just can’t do chicken piccata without ‘em as far as I’m concerned. I made pasta the night before (which was a total flop, by the way. Boo!) so I served it up over cooked brown rice instead. Added a salad and some whole grain bread and called it a day. YUM! Eric gobbled it up. Except for the capers, of course, which were pushed off to the side into a neat little pile and then tossed in the trash. Heh. Why am I not surprised?
CHICKEN PICCATA (Recipe Adapted from Allrecipes.com)
- 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 1 tablespoon water
- 1/2 cup dried bread crumbs
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons butter or margarine
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 4 tablespoons dry white wine
- 1 tablespoon jarred capers, drained
- 2 lemons – cut into wedges, for garnish (optional)
- Flatten chicken to 1/4 inch thickness between plastic wrap or waxed paper. Mix egg and water. Mix bread crumbs, salt, pepper and garlic powder. Coat chicken with flour, dip into egg mixture and coat with bread crumb mixture.
- Heat butter or margarine and oil in 12 inch skillet over medium heat. Cook chicken for 8 to 10 minutes, turning once, until juice is no longer pink when centers of thickest pieces are cut. Remove chicken from skillet using tongs; keep warm.
- Stir lemon juice, wine and capers into drippings in skillet. Heat to boiling; pour over chicken. Sprinkle with chopped fresh parsley, and serve with lemon wedges for garnish.