Chicken Piccata with Rainbow Chard

Chicken picatta with Rainbow Chard / She Cooks, He Cleans

We were out of town last week, although not really vacationing.  I had envisioned cooking up a storm and having lots of things to post, but soon after arriving at our non-airconditioned home (in a desert) those plans fell to the wayside.  I forget how much turning on a stove or oven heats the entire house – not to mention the cook!  I did manage to prepare a few things, without having to turn the oven on once.  Next time, I will plan on either doing my cooking very early when the air is cool, or serving a lot of salads!

This version of chicken piccata, made without flour, came together fairly quickly on the stove top in a single saute pan.  I also pan-roasted cauliflower in a separate cast iron pan, which was delicious with the lemony sauce and capers.

[Note:  If you happened to make the Garlic Scape Pesto from the previous post, it can be used instead of minced garlic in this recipe (it is what I used). Whisk a big spoonful into the sauce at the end, with the butter.]

Ingredients (serves 2):

  • 1 boneless, skinless chicken breast (2 halves)
  • Coconut oil (or oil of choice for med-high cooking temps)
  • 1 bunch of Swiss Chard (Rainbow Chard pictured)
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Juice of 1 lemon (about 1/3 cup)
  • White wine or stock (about 1/3 to 1/2 cup)
  • 1/4 cup capers, rinsed
  • 2 tablespoons butter (preferably pastured)
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Separate the leaves of the chard from the thick stems.  Trim off the rough ends of the stems and discard. Slice the rest of the stems in small pieces (about 1/4 to 1/2 inch wide). Roll the leaves up in a bunch, like a cigar, and slice crosswise into ribbons.  Wash the stems and leaves separately, and dry with towels.

Slice the chicken breasts in half to make thin breasts, as if slicing a bagel.  Lay the breast flat on the cutting board, and starting with the thickest part of the breast, carefully split the breast with the knife parallel to the cutting board.  Season with salt and pepper.

Heat 2-3 tablespoons of oil in a saute pan over medium-high heat.  When the oil is hot, saute the breasts, about 3 minutes on each side, until browned and cooked throughout.  Remove from pan and set aside in a clean bowl – cover to keep warm.

With about 2 tablespoons of oil in the pan (add more if necessary), add the chard stems to the pan and saute for a few minutes, until tender. Add in the chard leaves a handful at a time, and toss over the heat until wilted.  Season with salt and pepper, to taste.  Remove the chard from the pan and place in the bottom of a serving dish large enough for the chicken and chard. Place the chicken over the chard (reserving any accumulated juices for the sauce).

Add about 1 tablespoon of oil to the pan, and reduce the heat to medium.  Add the shallots and garlic, and saute for about a minute until soft and fragrant (do not brown).  Add the lemon juice and wine (or stock) to the pan, and bring to a simmer while stirring to scrape up any browned bits from the pan.  Add the capers and any accumulated juices from the chicken; continue to simmer until the sauce is slightly reduced.  Turn off the heat and whisk in the butter.  Taste and adjust seasoning (if too tart, it may help to add a bit of sweetness (honey or sugar), more butter, or a little more salt).

Pour the sauce over the chicken and chard.  Serve and enjoy!

Chicken picatta with Rainbow Chard / She Cooks, He Cleans

odessaGot to have a cool cook…and she is! Cool music today as well. Joe Ely, Jimmie Dale Gilmore and Butch Hancock are The Flatlanders, and we saw them last week and totally enjoyed their laid back genius! Here’s their “new” release, The Odessa Tapes which isn’t new at all, but rather demos made 35 years ago. Great intro to their magic!


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