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Chef Alex Hitz

2:10 PM, Oct 8, 2012   |    comments
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"My Beverly Hills Kitchen: Classic Southern Cooking With A French Twist" is available online and in bookstores.

Parmesan Crusted Chicken
with lemon butter
Excerpted from MY BEVERLY HILLS KITCHEN by Alex Hitz. Copyright © 2012 by Alex Hitz. Excerpted by permission of Knopf, a division of Random House, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

This preparation is a cousin of the traditional francese, an egg-dipped, battered, sautéed breast finished with a lemon and butter pan sauce; its cousin is piccata. All in the family! I have added Parmesan cheese to the crust here, along with garlic, and chopped chives, and am happy to say that this easy preparation is just as much at home on a chicken breasts, as it is on a veal cutlet. In other words, if you master this treatment for chicken, you automatically have another one up your sleeve for veal...

Yield: 6-8 servings

2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 1/2 teaspoons plus 2 1/8 teaspoons salt, divided
¾ teaspoon plus 1 1/8 teaspoons ground black pepper, divided
4 eggs
1 cup milk
3/4 cup lemon juice, divided
2 tablespoons minced garlic
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese, firmly packed
½ cup all-purpose flour
6 tablespoons salted butter
3 tablespoons olive oil
Chopped chives to garnish

Wash and thoroughly pat dry the chicken or the veal.
Butterfly or pound the breasts so they are ¼- to 1/2-inch thick, and then season both sides with 1/8 teaspoon of the salt and pinch of the ground black pepper, for a total of 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper.
In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, ½ cup lemon juice, garlic, 1 ¼ teaspoons of the salt, and ½ teaspoon of the ground black pepper. Set the bowl aside.
In another mixing bowl, whisk together the Parmesan cheese, flour, 2 1/8 teaspoons of the salt, and 1 1/3 teaspoons of the ground black pepper. Set this bowl aside, too.
Melt the butter with the oil in a large, heavy skillet over a medium heat.
Dip the chicken in the dry ingredients, coating it on both sides. Then dip the chicken in the wet ingredients, coating it thoroughly on both sides, and then dredge it again in the dry ingredients. A thick coating will be evident on the breasts. When the foaming has subsided, sauté the chicken in batches approximately 3-4 minutes per side until both sides are golden brown.
Transfer the finished pieces onto a warm serving platter.
When you are finished sautéing the chicken, deglaze the pan with 1/4 cup of the lemon juice. Swirl the mixture together, and pour the lemon butter sauce over the top of the breasts. Garnish with the chopped chives, and serve.

Cookies

Yield: about 16-24 cookies, depending on their size

2 sticks, 16 tablespoons salted butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 cup dark brown sugar, firmly packed
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 ½ cups flour
½ teaspoon baking soda
2 ½ teaspoons salt
1 (11 or 12 ounce) bag of bittersweet chocolate chips
2 tablespoons grated orange zest

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment on medium speed, cream the butter, sugar, and brown sugar together until they are light and fluffy, about five minutes.
Add the eggs one at a time, and then the vanilla. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt, and with the mixer on the lowest speed, add it ½ cup at a time to the creamed butter and sugar until the dry ingredients are exhausted and the dough is just combined. Stir in the chocolate chips and orange peel and then refrigerate the dough for at least one hour.
Pre-heat the oven to 400°, and line a heavy baking sheet with parchment paper.
Place whatever size scoops of cold dough you desire on the prepared baking sheet, and bake the cookies for 10 to 15 minutes depending on their size. Let the cookies cool for at least 15 minutes before serving.



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