Parmesan Chicken with Arugula Salad

Adapted from Barefoot Contessa Family Style

Whenever we have friends over for dinner, this is the dish my husband requests. It’s a crowd pleaser and meets with approval by even our most discerning guests. I’ve made just a few slight modifications from Ina Garten’s original recipe and I think the result is quite satisfying.

  • 6 chicken breasts cutlets (see tips)
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup whole wheat bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
  • Olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons unsalted butter
  • 6 cups arugula
  • Everyday Vinaigrette
  • Coarse sea salt
  • On a large dinner plate, combine flours, salt and pepper. On another large plate, beat the eggs with 1 tablespoon water. On a third plate, combine the bread crumbs with the Parmesan cheese. I like to set these plates up in this order, with a large skillet to the immediate right. After you flour, egg and bread the cutlets, you can then put them right into the skillet.
  • Lightly salt and pepper both sides of each chicken breast. Dip both sides of each chicken breast in the flour mixture, then into the egg and finally, coat with the bread crumbs.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil  and 1 teaspoon of butter in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Cook chicken breasts in small batches (you will probably need to do at least two batches depending on the size of your skillet). Since they should be pounded out quite thin, you will only need to cook them about 3-4 minutes per side. The breading should be golden brown and the inside cooked through. Warm another 1 tablespoon of oil and 1 teaspoon of butter for each new batch.
  • Toss the arugula with the vinaigrette and top with a pinch of sea salt. Pile a mound of the dressed salad upon each chicken breast, then top with a crank of fresh ground pepper. Serve immediately.
  • Quick Tips
  • 1. I like to buy the chicken breasts already pounded out into thin cutlets. I can’t always find them in this form, so if I’m starting with regular boneless, skinless chicken breasts I pound them out between two pieces of wax paper. They should be about 1/4 inch thick.
  • 2. This is not a good recipe to try to double since you have to cook the chicken breasts in batches. They are too hard to keep hot when you have to make more than two batches. Part of the delight of this dish is the hot chicken topped with the cool salad. You’ll lose it if your chicken breasts are cold.

Preparation time: 15 minute(s)

Cooking time: 25 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 6

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