Pecan Crusted Chicken
My Notes: this recipe was written for pecans - I have used blanched almond slices and my personal fav (unsalted) roasted cashews.
the original does not call for toasting the nuts but I do - prior to chopping - because I think it adds immensely to the flavor impact
it's a bit involved, but it is really good.
see notes on "Things you wish someone had told you" at the end.
allow about 90 minutes prep time.
the crust mixture:
3/4 cup finely chopped pecan
1 cup coarse bread crumbs (I use panko or homemade french crumbs)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 teaspoon coarse aka kosher salt
qtr teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
zest of one lemon
half teaspoon dried oregano
half teaspoon dried thyme
half teaspoon paprika
qtr teaspoon cayenne - more if you're a hot freak
two breasts, trimmed of skin & fat, sliced longwise
pounded flat to about half inch thick
the egg wash:
2 egg whites
2 teaspoons cornstarch
juice of one-half lemon
preheat oven to 450'F
dip chicken in egg wash, drip off
roll chick in crust mix - heap on the crust mix and pat onto chicken until nicely coated
allow coated chicken to air dry 20-30 minutes on a wire rack
heat up a saute pan to hot - add olive oil
saute chicken pcs brown on one side & then flip - once only
remove to oven-proof pan / rack
finish in oven for 8-10 minutes
allow to rest before slicing on the bias for service.
serve over a green salad bed with honey mustard dressing
qtr cup honey
3 tablespoons dijon mustard
3 tablespoons olive oil - evoo if you like one
1 tablespoon minced shallot (I double that)
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
juice of one half lemon - which puts the entire one lemon in a all gone state . . .
greens per your tastes / availability - I like loose red + arugula + romaine
half cup thin sliced red onion
crumbled goat cheese
toss in dressing to coat; plate
sprinkle on any bread / nut crumbs that fell off the chicken in the saute pan/oven
place sliced chicken atop.
original recipe / approach from Cuisine at Home - slightly modified and entirely re-written for clarity by me.
Things you wish you had known before hand:
(1) a good "crusting" requires a rather uniform chop of the nuts and the bread crumbs. I use (sometimes toasted) but homemade bread "cubes" chopped into crumbs. some pulses in a food processor is quick - do the bread crumb and nuts separately. I like to chop a few nuts a bit more roughly for their texture, mix in with the fines...
(2) pan fry temperature - don't get carried away. nuts do burn - and they taste awful when burned.
(3) oven finishing - timing requires at best an instant read thermometer. the oven time will depend on whether the chicken was brought to room temp, how long and how hot it was pan fired per side and the thickness - I'm prone to pounding them to a level thickness along the length.
these are actually left over chunks, reheated for din-din at fresh + 2 days.
that's potato salad hiding under the egg.