This is one of those recipes that’s perfect for when you have no idea what to make. It calls for just a short list of ingredients, most of which you might already have around the house.
The name of this dish technically should be called “my dad’s famous lemon chicken”. He makes it for us every Christmas day, along with my grandma’s lasagna. The simplicity of the two dishes is what makes the combination just wonderful. I’ve realized, though, that Christmas only comes once a year, and this dish deserves to be eaten way more than that.
The chicken gets a simple dredging of flour and egg before cooking in sizzling hot oil. If your chicken breasts are too thick, use your knife to butterfly them before you coat them. This means you’ll want to slice the breast horizontally, following the seams, so that the chicken basically unfolds into two thinner breasts. Slice down the middle to separate them, resulting in chicken breasts that will have a much better chicken to coating ratio. It’s all about the coating!
The slightly crispy exterior of the chicken, combined with a luxurious lemon sauce seeping between every crevice, results in a mouth-watering texture. The sauce is really easy to whip up. It’s made in the same pan as the chicken and is flavored with oregano, lots of lemon, and a splash of sherry wine for some depth. I like to serve the whole thing over a nice heaping mound of pasta. Enjoy!
oregano + parmesan
Yield: 4-6 servings
4 chicken breasts
Salt & pepper
½ cup flour
¼ cup vegetable oil
2 tbsp flour
1/3 cup sherry wine
1 cup chicken stock
1/8 tsp dried oregano
1 sprig fresh oregano
Parmesan cheese, to garnish
Chopped parsley, to garnish
Take the chicken and pat it dry with a paper towel. Season both sides with a generous amount of salt and pepper. Add the flour to a mixing bowl. Place the chicken into the bowl and coat completely with the flour. Let sit for 5-10 minutes. Meanwhile, crack and beat the eggs into another mixing bowl. Heat a large cast-iron skillet (or sauté pan) over medium high heat. Add enough oil to come about ½ of an inch up the side of the pan. While the oil heats, shake off the excess flour from the chicken and place the chicken into the egg bowl. Once the oil is sizzling hot, add each chicken breast to the pan, letting the excess egg drip off into the mixing bowl before adding it. Adjust the heat if it gets too hot. Cook each chicken breast until golden brown, about 5-6 minutes per side. Transfer the chicken to a sheet tray and let sit while you make the sauce.
Keep about 3 tablespoons of oil in the pan you used to cook the chicken. Discard any excess. Lower the heat and add the flour, whisking continuously until the mixture is smooth. Over medium-high heat, deglaze the pan with the sherry wine. Add the stock and dried oregano. Cut the lemon in half and juice half of it into the sauce. Slice the remaining half and add the slices to the sauce. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and add the fresh oregano sprig. Let the sauce simmer until it is slightly thickened. Add the chicken back to the pan and heat until the chicken is cooked through. Remove the oregano sprig before serving.
Serve the chicken over pasta with a generous ladle of lemon sauce, a large grating of Parmesan cheese, and a sprinkle of parsley.
Printable version of Lemon Chicken