Lizet says: “While banting is not exactly my cup of tea, I’ve decided to shun the carbs for a while – like maybe for a day or two. Eating fresh and light(er) it is. With capers, lemon, parsley and garlic, this super quick and easy chicken recipe packs a walloping salty, zingy, tangy, herby flavour punch. The inspiration for it is Italian pollo al limone which mostly also includes some flour and white wine. But I want dinner on the table in under 15 minutes, so this is my shortcut cheat’s recipe. Naturally it goes brilliantly with home-made pappardelle pasta or cheesy parmesan mash. It’s just as good piled high onto crunchy baby butter or baby cos lettuce heads. And if I repeat that often enough, I may just believe it.”
Chicken with lemon and capers (pollo al limone)
All you need is…
3 large chicken breasts
2 large cloves garlic, unpeeled
4 tbs extra virgin olive oil
2 tbs salted butter (leave out if you absolutely have to!)
salt and black pepper
juice of one lemon
large handful of flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
1 heaped tbs small non pareilles capers (I found some at Woolies)
baby cos or baby butter lettuce heads, quartered or cut in half
Slice the chicken breasts in two lengthways so you have two thinner pieces from each breast. Heat a thick-bottomed saucepan until very hot and then add the olive oil. Whack the garlic cloves once with the side of a knife to flatten and open the cloves slightly. (Do not peel them, the skin provides protection so the garlic does not burn.) Generously salt the chicken on both sides and add it to the hot pan with the garlic. Fry on high heat until the chicken is golden brown. Chicken breast is naturally the driest part of a chicken. While a dry sense of humour may be desirable in sophisticated circles, dry poultry is not, so take care – it’s done as soon as it’s no longer pink inside.
Remove the pan from the heat and add the butter, capers and parsley straight away. The pan will be very hot, so the residual heat will melt the butter instantly. As soon as it’s melted, deglaze the pan by adding the lemon juice. Grind over some black pepper and pile the chicken on the lettuce. Pour the pan juices over the chicken. You don’t need dressing, the rich, salty lemony sauce makes the perfect dressing and I just love the contrast of hot chicken, warm dressing and cold, crisp lettuce. Enjoy!
Michael’s wine recommendation – CLICK HERE
Lizet Hartley is one of my favourite food bloggers, her website is beautiful, her food is real nostalgia stuff. Food from the heart. She says, “I’m a freelance recipe developer, food stylist and food and lifestyle writer. Melkkos & Merlot is my blog baby, my space where I play with new recipes, old favourites and my camera.” Her blog converts easily between English and Afrikaans at the click of a button, is well worth a visit. Subscribe to her newsletter, it is a joy. Click here.