Crispy Chicken Cutlets With Fresh Tomatoes

This is one of my favorite chicken dishes that I have made frequently over the years. Luckily, ripe, sweet cherry tomatoes are available year round, so anytime I am in the mood for this dish I can find the ingredients and put it together pretty quickly. As I always state, fresh, homemade breadcrumbs are far superior to dry store bought ones and in a recipe this simple, using the best ingredients will ensure the best results. I keep my leftover bread, cutting it into cubes and then freezing it for when I need fresh breadcrumbs. When I want breadcrumbs, I then throw a hand full of the cubes into my food processor, still frozen, with whatever seasonings I want. I then pulse the mixture until it reaches the desired texture.

A chicken cutlet is simply a boneless, skinless chicken breast that has been sliced lengthwise into thin slices about 1/3 of an inch thick. If you cannot find the chicken already cut into slices it is simple to do yourself. Just freeze the chicken breasts until they just about frozen and with a sharp knife cut into cutlets. Use a meat mallet and lightly pound the cutlets until they are of equal thickness.

Buon Appetito!
Deborah Mele 2011

Crispy Chicken Cutlets With Fresh Tomatoes

Making your own breadcrumbs makes all the difference in this easy chicken dish.

Ingredients:

For The Cutlets:

  • 4 Chicken Cutlets
  • 3 Cups Stale Bread Cubes
  • 1 Teaspoon Grated Lemon Zest
  • 1 Teaspoon Chopped Red Chile Pepper (Optional)
  • 3 Tablespoons Chopped Fresh Parsley
  • 1/2 Cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 1/4 Cup Pine Nuts
  • Sea Salt
  • Cracked Black Pepper
  • 2 Large Eggs
  • 2 Tablespoons Butter
  • 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil

For The Tomato Topping:

  • 2 Pints Cherry Tomatoes, Washed And Sliced In Half
  • 2 Garlic Cloves, Peeled And Minced
  • Sea Salt & Cracked Black Pepper
  • 1/4 Cup Fresh Chopped Basil Or Parsley

Directions:

  1. Place the bread cubes, lemon zest, chile pepper, parsley, grated cheese, sea salt and pepper in the food processor.
  2. Pulse until finely blended, then add the pine nuts and pulse just until the nuts are coarsely chopped.
  3. Beat the eggs and dip the cutlets first into the eggs, then the breadcrumbs and press with your fingertips to help the crumbs adhere.
  4. Refrigerate the chicken for one hour to allow the crumb coating to set.
  5. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  6. Mix together the tomato topping ingredients in a bowl and set aside.
  7. Place the butter and olive oil in a flat casserole dish or pan large enough to hold all of the cutlets and place the cutlets on top.
  8. Cook for 10 minutes until the cutlets are browned on one side and turn.
  9. Cook an additional 7 to 10 minutes or until the cutlets are cooked through.
  10. Serve on individual plates with a scoop of the fresh tomato topping.