Parmesan-Crusted Chicken Cutlets

Published March 1, 2007.

Why this recipe works:

In search of a recipe for moist and tender chicken coated with a thin, crispy-yet-chewy, waferlike sheath of Parmesan cheese, we found that we needed to use a pan-frying method to achieve a crisp crust, with a nonstick skillet to keep the crust from fusing to the bottom. To keep the cheese… read more

In search of a recipe for moist and tender chicken coated with a thin, crispy-yet-chewy, waferlike sheath of Parmesan cheese, we found that we needed to use a pan-frying method to achieve a crisp crust, with a nonstick skillet to keep the crust from fusing to the bottom. To keep the cheese from burning, we used fairly thin (1/4 inch thick) chicken cutlets, which cook quickly. And to create a substantial crust for our chicken cutlet recipe, we required both a base layer of equal parts flour and grated cheese and a top layer of only cheese.

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Serves 4

The chicken breasts will be easier to slice into cutlets if you freeze them for 15 minutes until firm but not fully frozen. To slice in half, place one hand on top of the breast to secure it, hold a chef's knife parallel to the cutting board, and slice through the middle of the breast horizontally. Note that 1/2 ounce of Parmesan is grated on the smallest holes of a box grater (or Microplane rasp grater); the remaining 6 ounces are shredded on the largest holes of the box grater (see photos below). We like the flavor that authentic Parmigiano-Reggiano lends to this recipe. Less-expensive DiGiorno Parmesan cheese can also be used, but the resulting cheese crust will be slightly saltier and chewier. Serve this chicken with a simple salad. Although the portion size (1 cutlet per person) might seem small, these cutlets are rather rich due to the cheese content. To make 8 cutlets, double the ingredients and cook the chicken in 4 batches, transferring the cooked cutlets to a warm oven and wiping out the skillet after each batch.

Ingredients

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