Our customers tend to fall into two very distinct and separate groups of chicken lovers. They either cook chicken breast only and are intimidated by the idea of a whole chicken or, like Debbie, aren’t excited at the thought of dry, tough chicken breast smothered in some sauce for flavor.
Debbie’s thoughts on chicken:
And then Chicken Piccata! A chef in Indiana made it for me and I left with a new determination to conquer this fear of frying – pan frying that is. All my favorite things in one dish – chicken, wine, lemon and capers!! Need I say more?
What I needed to find out was how to keep my chicken from drying out and becoming tough. Most people tend to look to poaching or brining but I like the idea of pounding chicken breast to a thickness of 1/4″ and very quickly pan frying.
While poaching works for some recipes I love the bits of caramelized crust left stuck to the pan that make your sauce or gravy have a depth of flavor that you just can’t get any other way.
The trick to pan frying success is the thickness of the meat, making sure that the oil in the pan is very hot and only turning the chicken once. Also, using a heavy bottomed pan will keep the burning to a minimum.
It is also important not to crowd the pan or the flour coating will come off due to the steaming rather than frying of the meat.