Crispy Chicken Tenders with Piccata Sauce
- Crispy Chicken Tenders:
- 3/4 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
- 1/2 packed cup fresh spinach leaves
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
- Zest of 1 large lemon
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 3/4 cup buttermilk
- 1 pound chicken tenders, patted dry with paper towels and cut into 2-inch pieces
- 3/4 cup safflower or vegetable oil
- Piccata Sauce:
- 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (from 1/2 large lemon)
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley leaves
- 2 teaspoons agave
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
For the chicken: Combine the breadcrumbs, spinach, Parmesan, lemon zest, salt and pepper in a food processor. Blend until the spinach is finely chopped, then transfer to a medium bowl. Mix together the chicken and buttermilk in another medium bowl. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the chicken to the breadcrumb mixture, allowing any extra buttermilk to drip back into the bowl. Toss until the chicken pieces are coated.
Heat the oil in a 12-inch high-sided skillet over medium-high heat (the oil is hot enough when a pinch of breadcrumbs sizzles when added to the pan). Add one-third of the chicken and fry until golden and crispy, about 3 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels. Repeat with the remaining chicken.
For the sauce: Combine the broth, lemon juice and flour in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly, then lower the heat and simmer until thick, about 3 minutes. Whisk in the butter until smooth. Stir in the parsley, agave and salt. Keep warm.
Pour the sauce over the chicken or serve alongside as a dipping sauce.
Recipe courtesy Giada De Laurentiis