Chicken Breasts Picatta

This recipe started out early in my cooking career as an attempt to reproduce a dish I had in a restaurant. Actually, I think it's an improvement over the original.


  • 2 skinless, boneless chicken breasts (4 halves)
  • 2 Tbsp flour
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp minced shallots
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 3 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • zest of 1/2 lemon julienned
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, seeds and ribs discarded, julienned
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Tbsp minced parsley

  • Directions

    Cut horizontally through each chicken breast half to make two cutlets, yielding a total of 8 cutlets. Using a meat pounder or the bottom of a pot, lightly pound the cutlets between sheets of waxed paper to make them of even thickness, but do not make them too thin.

    Heat the oil in a heavy skillet. Dust the cutlets lightly with flour, and sauté them over medium-high heat until lightly browned. Don't overcook. Set aside in a warm place on a plate covered loosely with aluminum foil.

    Add shallots to the pan and sauté briefly until wilted, then deglaze pan with wine and chicken stock. Add the lemon zest, jalapeño and any juices that have accumulated around the chicken breasts, and cook down until about 1/4 cup of liquid remains, Add lemon juice. Remove from heat and swirl in the butter. Spoon sauce with julienned zest and pepper over cutlets, and garnish with parsley.