This is my favorite way to serve chicken cutlets, with very lightly dressed arugula and Parmesan shavings. It’s a common Italian preparation that I like to imagine is a staple in homes with children throughout the country. It makes me feel worldly even though my kids are probably thinking, “Yay, chicken fingers for dinner!” A win-win, I guess.
You can certainly serve this with a soup or side veggie, but if you’re in a rush, skip it an arugula salad is built in, after all. Instead, put your energy toward making Garlic Bread, or even better, Cheesy Garlic Bread.
- Yield: 4 Servings
- 1⁄2 cup all-purpose flour, plus more as necessary
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 large eggs
- 2 cups panko bread crumbs
- 1⁄4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1½ to 2 pounds boneless, skinless, thin-cut chicken cutlets
- 6 to 8 tablespoons olive oil, plus more as necessary
- 5 ounces baby arugula
- 3 tablespoons olive oil, or to taste
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (from about 1 juicy lemon)
- Salt, to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- Parmesan shavings
- To prepare the chicken: place the flour, salt, and pepper in a wide, shallow bowl. Beat the eggs in a second wide, shallow bowl along with 2 teaspoons of water. Combine the bread crumbs and grated Parmesan in a third wide, shallow bowl.
- Lay out the chicken in a single layer and pat dry. Dredge each cutlet in the flour, shaking off any excess. Dip it in the egg mixture, turning to coat both sides, allowing any excess to drip back into the bowl. Lastly, dip in the bread crumbs, turning to coat both sides and pressing to help the bread crumbs adhere. Repeat with all the cutlets; I find it easiest to dredge all of the cutlets in flour, then all of them in egg, and lastly, all of them in bread crumbs, rather than taking one breast through the whole process and repeating it.
- Set a paper towel–lined plate next to the stove. Heat 6 tablespoons of the oil in a large pan set over medium-high heat. Add the cutlets to the pan, being careful not to overcrowd; you may need to work in batches. Cook, untouched, until one side turns golden brown, about 4 minutes; flip and cook the second side for another 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer the chicken from the pan to the paper towel–lined plate and add an additional 2 tablespoons of oil to the pan before cooking the next batch of chicken. Continue until all the cutlets are cooked. Season with more salt to taste, if desired.
- To prepare the arugula salad: place the arugula in a large bowl and toss with the oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and Parmesan shavings to taste. Serve the cutlets on top of the salad or top each cutlet with salad; either way, serve immediately.