Crispy Parmesan Crusted Chicken with Green Bean Salad
Green Beans in Shallot Vinaigrette:
1 Lb green beans, stems removed
1 shallot, small dice
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1 tsp honey
3/4 cup olive oil
salt and pepper
Fill a medium saucepan with water and add one tablespoon of salt. Place on stovetop over high heat and bring to a boil.
Once the water is boiling, add the green beans and cook for 3 minutes, or until just beginning to soften, but still have a little crunch. While they are cooking fill a large bowl with ice water. Drain the green beans and put into the ice water to cool. While they are cooling make the shallot vinaigrette.
Put the shallot, honey, 1 tsp of salt, a few grindings of pepper and the vinegar in a bowl, mix together. Slowly whisk in the olive oil. Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper as needed.
Once the green beans have cooled, drain them well and place them on a cutting board and cut into slivers*. Put them in a bowl and drizzle about a quarter cup of the shallot vinaigrette over the top (save the rest of the shallot vinaigrette to use on salad or other veggies). Taste the green beans for seasoning and add salt and pepper as needed. Set aside while you prepare the chicken
* To sliver the green beans, I cut them in half, so they are half the length, and then I cut them along their seams in half to expose their beans inside. Then I cut them into slivers. This is slightly tedious, so if in a rush or if you don't want to take the time, just cut them into bite sized pieces before tossing with the vinaigrette. Or you can serve them whole next to the chicken.
Crispy Parmesan Crusted Chicken:
2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breast or thighs
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
1 cup flour
3/4 cup parmesan cheese, grated
1 1/2 cup dry bread crumbs
1 tsp fresh thyme, finely chopped
2-4 tablespoons of butter
2-4 tablespoons of olive oil
salt and pepper
Working with one at a time, place the chicken breast or thigh between two pieces of plastic wrap and pound with a meat tenderizer until 1/4 inch thick. Repeat with remaining chicken pieces. Set aside on a plate.
Set up a three-stage breading station:
Place three shallow bowls on your counter. In the first bowl put the flour, 1 teaspoon of salt, a few grindings of pepper and stir together. In the second bowl whisk together the eggs and dijon mustard. In the third bowl combine the breadcrumbs, parmesan, thymes, 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a few grindings of pepper.
Place a baking sheet next to the three bowls. One at a time place a piece of chicken in the flour, coat the entire piece and then shake off the excess. Next move it into the egg bowl, coat evenly with the egg mixture, removing the excess, and finally move it into the breadcrumb bowl. Evenly coat with the breadcrumbs and set on the baking sheet. Repeat process with the remaining chicken
In a large cast iron skillet or sauté pan, heat 2 tablespoons of butter and 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium high heat. Once the butter has melted and started to bubble a little bit, add 3-4 pieces of the chicken to the pan, as many as you can fit in a single layer without over crowding. Let the chicken cook for 2-3 minutes, or until brown and crispy. Reduce the heat if it is browning too quickly or starting to burn. Flip the chicken over and repeat on the other side. Remove the chicken from the pan and onto a plate or cutting board, sprinkle with a pinch of salt. If the pan is dry of oil and butter, add the remaining 2 tablespoons of each. Repeat cooking process with the remaining chicken.
Once all the chicken is cooked, place it on a platter (sliced or unsliced) and squeeze the juice of one lemon over the top. Scatter the reserved green beans over the top, or serve on the side. Serve immediately while still warm.