Creating recipes isn't a pastime—it's a passion. And a lot of fun.

The rules are few: Use 99% fresh ingredients (or thereabouts); make the dish simple but flavorful; make the dish flavorful but simple; be creative, not silly.

With this blog, I want to share new recipes, along with tips on ingredients and preparation, and, hopefully, show new cooks (and non-cooks) the pleasure in setting the table with a delicious homemade meal. The Briny Lemon is about fresh, simple, flavorful ingredients and easy cooking methods that help you bring the best to your family table. Your comments are welcome!

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Chicken Scaloppini with Broccoli Rabe Skillet

Broccoli rabe (pronounced “rob,” and called “rapini” in Italian) is a nutritious, delicious leafy green vegetable that isn’t actually related to broccoli. This member of the turnip family gets its name from the small blooms poking through the leaves that do indeed look like broccoli florets.

Broccoli Rabe or Rapini 
Broccoli-Like Florets
But broccoli rabe is more about leaves and stems than florets. Just chop it all together and enjoy the peppery, slightly bitter earthiness of this tasty green. For this recipe, I paired it with garlicky fresh tomatoes and creamy mozzarella for a one-skillet dish to accompany simple chicken scaloppini.

Two keys to scaloppini: thin and quick. Here, I used chicken tenders (three to four ounces each) because they’re just the right size to pound thinly and cook quickly.

For a little more info about broccoli rabe, check out Chicken in White Wine Broth with Pan-Seared Rapini.

Serves 4

  • 8 chicken tenders, 3-4 oz each
  • 3 tbsp olive oil, divided, plus more as needed
  • 1-1/2 cups grape tomatoes, halved
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 bunch broccoli rabe, chopped, 5-6 cups (thick bottom stems removed)
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 4-oz mozzarella ball, thinly sliced
  • flour, for dredging
Chicken Tenders 
Broccoli Rabe, Tomatoes, and Mozzarella
  1. Preheat the oven to 375° F.
  2. Place the chicken tenders between pieces of plastic wrap and pound each very thinly, between 1/8- and 1/4-inch thick. Set aside.
Pounded Chicken Tender
  1. Heat a large ovenproof skillet over medium heat and add 1 tablespoon of oil. Add the tomatoes and garlic and sauté until the tomatoes begin to soften, 2 minutes.
  2. Add the broccoli rabe and wine and season with salt and pepper. Sauté until the broccoli rabe begins to wilt, 3-4 minutes. Remove from the heat.
  3. Scatter the mozzarella slices on top of the skillet mixture (ingredients will not be completely covered). Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake until the cheese has melted, 6-7 minutes.
Tomatoes and Garlic
Wilted Broccoli Rabe 
Mozzarella Topping 
Broccoli Rabe Skillet
  1. Meanwhile, heat a very large (preferably cast-iron) skillet over medium heat and add the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Dredge each piece of chicken in the flour, shaking off excess. (Note: Work in batches if the skillet will not hold all pieces in a single layer, and use more oil as needed.)
  2. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and fry until golden brown on the bottom, 4-5 minutes. Turn and fry until golden brown on the other side and just cooked through, 3-4 minutes, depending on thickness.
Chicken Beginning to Cook
Cooked Chicken Scaloppini
To serve, divide the broccoli rabe mixture among 4 plates and place 2 pieces of chicken scaloppini alongside. Spoon pan juices overtop and serve right away.

Chicken Scaloppini with Broccoli Rabe Skillet

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