Chicken Marbella

This may be the best chicken you ever eat! This recipe is a crowd pleaser, and perfect for picnics because it tastes best at room temperature. The recipe serves 12, but it’s easy to halve or even quarter. It keeps well, so there is no harm in making the full recipe and enjoying leftovers all week long.

pre-oven

pre-oven

It’s important to marinate the chicken at least overnight, and up to 48 hours. This step tenderizes the chicken and infuses it with flavor. When you’re ready to bake, just sprinkle it with brown sugar and pour white wine on top. I typically cut the brown sugar in half, but that’s a matter of personal preference. Capers and olives balance the sweetness of the brown sugar and dried prunes. I substitute Kalamata olives because they’re my favorite, but really any good olive will do.

it's great for guests because all the work is done in advance

it’s great for guests because all the work is done in advance

This dish is beautiful and smells mouth-watering as it comes out of the oven. Sprinkling some fresh parsley over the chicken after baking adds some freshness and brightens up the other flavors. I typically serve this with rice just so I can make the most of the sauce. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

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Chicken Marbella via Epicurious

Silver Palate Cookbook

Quick Italian Chicken Piccata

There’s something about February that makes me want to hibernate. The pleasure I get from dressing in warm, bulky sweaters and indulging in hearty stews has begun to wear off. All I know is that my hands are cold and the calendar has months to go before May. I must not be the only person who feels this way, so with the assumption that some of you may be wrapped in blankets contemplating Spring I’ve decided to make February a month of fast & simple recipes.

pound flat and season, then brown

pound flat and season, then brown

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I chose chicken piccata because I’ve never made it before and I love the combination of tangy lemon and salty capers. It’s perfect for a quick dinner because the thin-cut chicken cutlets cook in no time. You can use thinly sliced cutlets or you can pound your chicken breasts until they are about ½ inch thick. I chose to do the latter, placing the breasts between two sheets of parchment and pounding them with a rolling pin. I’m confident that this is not the traditional way, although it’s not the oddest method out there either. Season your cutlets before you brown them to ensure they have some flavor. I kept mine closer to ¾ of an inch, so I increased the cooking time to 4 minutes per side. Tenting the cooked chicken under foil keeps them warm and juicy.

capers

capers

The single tablespoon of butter adds a nice creaminess to the sauce, but you can use olive oil if you’re avoiding dairy. My only deviation from the recipe was not to rinse the capers. I drained them and left them whole. They would certainly be milder if they are rinsed first, but I enjoyed them as-is and it made the recipe even easier.

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I served this with lots of steamed broccoli, although if you truly love capers you can try this sauteed kale with garlic, shallots, and capers recipe. This side dish is part of my regular rotation, but the broccoli is simpler and this month that’s what I’m all about!

Quick Italian Chicken Piccata via Fine Cooking

Issue 93