Cornmeal-Crusted Chicken with Horseradish Sauce and Pears
Horseradish is an unsung hero in playfully fusing sweet flavors into savory dishes. This recipe starts with leeks and pears that are roasted in hot sauce, honey and vinegar. Next, chicken cutlets are breaded in cornmeal and Parmesan (bonus: it's gluten free) and the dish is finished with a creamy horseradish sauce. The result is a meal that's both comforting and unexpected. It's a great change of pace if chicken cutlets are a dinner staple in your household.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Top a baking sheet with a wire rack or line it with paper towels.
In a large bowl, combine the leeks, pears, olive oil, 1 tablespoon honey, 1 tablespoon hot sauce, 1 tablespoon vinegar and salt and pepper to taste. Toss to combine and place on a baking sheet. Roast, tossing the leeks and pears about every 10 minutes, until golden brown and cooked through, 25 to 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, pat the chicken breasts dry. Using a sharp knife, split each chicken breast in two horizontally, so you have 4 cutlets. Gently pound each breast with a mallet or bottom of a small heavy saucepan so it's thinner and even in thickness. Sprinkle the cutlets on both sides with salt and black pepper.
Whisk the eggs, 1 tablespoon of the prepared horseradish and 2 tablespoons water together in a shallow bowl or pie plate. Combine the cornmeal and Parmesan in a second shallow bowl or pie plate. Dip a chicken cutlet in the cornmeal mixture, then in the eggs, and then back into the cornmeal. Place on a plate or small baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining cutlets.
Pour about 1 inch of the frying oil into a large skillet with high sides and place over medium-high heat. When the oil is very hot, working in two batches, fry the chicken until golden on the outside and cooked through, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Set aside on the prepared baking sheet. Immediately sprinkle with kosher salt.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the sour cream, mayonnaise, remaining 1 tablespoon prepared horseradish, remaining 1 tablespoon honey, remaining 1 tablespoon hot sauce and remaining 1 tablespoon vinegar. Whisk in half of the chopped chives. Season the sauce with salt and pepper to taste.
Spoon sauce onto the bottom of each serving plate. Top each with a chicken cutlet and roasted leeks and pears and sprinkle with chives. Enjoy!