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Saute Breaded Chicken Breasts

(Newsletter Issue #019)


How to saute breaded chicken breast

Breading and sauteing in butter is an excellent way to prepare boneless and skinless chicken breast. The breading traps the delicious lightly browned, hazelnut-flavored butter and flavors the mild-tasting white meat. Breading also allows you to brown over a relatively low heat (breading browns at a lower temperature than the flesh), which makes it easier to brown the breasts without overcooking and protects them from drying out. Boned chicken breasts can usually be found at the supermarket, but you'll get more for your money if you start with a whole chicken or whole bone-in chicken breasts and bone the breasts yourself. In any event, breasts should be lightly pounded to an even thickness so that they cook evenly.


Kitchen Notes and Tips -

  • Breaded chicken breasts require a fair amount of fat to brown evenly. Add enough butter or oil to the pan to come to a depth of about 1/8 inch.

  • Saute over medium - not high - heat. If the breading browns too quickly, turn the heat down; if not quickly enough, raise the heat slightly.

  • Saute in whole or clarified butter; with clarified butter, there won't be any dark specks of milk solids clinging to the breading. Extra virgin olive oil can also be used.

  • Serve the breasts with lemon wedges and a flavored butter.

  • You'll get the best results if you use fresh bread crumbs.

  • For a different flavor, replace the flour with porcini powder or grated Parmesan cheese, or a mixture of half bread crumbs and half grated Parmesan.

Sauteing Boneless Chicken Breast

1. Place each chicken breast between 2 sheets of waxed paper or plastic wrap and gently flatten the thick end with the side of a cleaver so the whole breast is of the same thickness. Don't overdo it. If the chicken is too thin, it will dry out.
2. Coat each breast on both sides with flour and pat off the excess.
3. Dip the chicken in beaten egg that has been well seasoned with salt and pepper.
4. Coat the breasts on both sides with fresh bread crumbs.
5. Saute the breaded chicken breasts in clarified butter or extra virgin olive oil over medium heat, until golden brown and firm to the touch which is about 3 to 4 minutes on each side, turning once. Turn gently with tongs so you don't tear the breading.

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