Thursday, January 28, 2016

This week's MENU recipe: Chicken Provolone

This week's recipe is another classic. Chicken Provolone The prep is a bit messy; you get to beat the hell out of some chicken breasts - very good if you are in a bad mood - and the result is impressive and not really very difficult. The tomato sauce is ready in about five to ten minutes and makes a very quick pasta sauce. (You could add some cream to enrich it and pour over pasta). Provolone cheese is available here, but buy the best one you can afford. It will pay off. You can add grated cheese and dried herbs to your breadcrumbs
Chicken Provolone

The sauce:    2 cups of tomato passata - 1 cup of good chicken stock - 1 t fresh thyme leaves - 1 T olive oil - 4 large cloves of garlic, thickly sliced - ¼ cup of finely chopped shallots or onion - ½ t chilli flakes, or more according to your taste) - 2 T fresh basil, torn
Liquidise or blitz the passata, with the chicken stock and thyme, with your hand blender. In a frying pan on a medium heat, add the olive oil and, when hot, add the sliced garlic, the chilli flakes and then the onion. Fry for a minute or two until softening, but not browning. Add the torn basil leaves and then pour on the sauce and simmer while you prepare the chicken. Taste and season before using.
4 chicken breasts - 2 eggs - 2 T whipping cream - 3 cups breadcrumbs - canola oil for frying - 300 g Provolone cheese, thinly sliced
Wrap each chicken breast in cling film and, using a mallet, bash them till they spread into scaloppine. Do not overbeat and don't use the studded side of your mallet. If the breasts are very large, slice them open as if you were making a pocket and then cut them in two equal pieces
Put the breadcrumbs into a wide flat dish. Whip the eggs with the cream and put into a matching dish.
Using tongs, dip each side of the scaloppini into the egg and cream mixture, then put it into the breadcrumbs. Using a spoon, cover the surface with the breadcrumbs, turn and make sure each side is well covered. (You can use your hands but you will make them very messy). Heat some oil in a large frying pan and fry for only 2 minutes on each side until browning and cooked. Remove and keep warm. Turn on your grill.

To serve, you need a pan or dish which will go under the hot grill. Put a good tablespoonful of the sauce onto the top of each scaloppina and then cover with a layer of the cheese. When all four are done, pop each under the grill until the top is melted and browning. You can do one at a time or all together. Put a good 2 spoonfuls of the sauce on each (warmed) plate, place a scaloppina on each and top with some dressed rocket and serve.
© John & Lynne Ford, Adamastor & Bacchus

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