Hazelnut Chicken

Our Chopped Dinner Challenge this week was hazelnuts. While they're most often used in desserts such as pralines, baked goods and hazelnut[ chocolate spread, we wanted to highlight their rich buttery flavor in a savory dish paired with breaded chicken and romaine. Chopped Basket Challenge: hazelnuts]

Total Time:
1 hr
Prep:
30 min
Cook:
30 min

Yield:
Serves 4
Level:
Easy

Ingredients
  • Four 6 to 8 ounce boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 1/4 cup hazelnuts
  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • Kosher salt and finely ground black pepper
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 6 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 romaine hearts, chopped
  • 2 plum tomatoes, chopped
  • 4 scallions, white and green parts, cut on a bias
Directions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Place the chicken on a work surface and pound it into 3/4-inch thickness with a meat pounder. Pulse the hazelnuts in a food processor until finely ground. Set aside 3 tablespoon of the hazelnuts, and combine the rest with the panko, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and spread evenly on a baking sheet. Season the chicken with a pinch each salt and pepper. Beat the eggs together with 1/2 teaspoon salt then dip each chicken, letting excess drip off. Dredge the chicken in the nut mixture. Heat 1 1/2 tablespoons of the oil in a large heavy skillet over medium high heat until hot, then add chicken, 2 at a time and brown, turning once, about 2 minutes per side. Brown remaining chicken with the same amount of oil for each batch, wiping out the skillet as necessary. Place chicken on a baking sheet and finish cooking in oven, about 6 minutes.

While the chicken cooks, whisk together the honey, lemon juice, garlic, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a medium bowl. Slowly stream the olive oil into the dressing while whisking. Once creamy and smooth, stir in the reserved 3 tablespoons of hazelnuts. Toss together the dressing with the romaine hearts, tomatoes, and scallions. Serve with the chicken.


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