Paillard (or scallopine) of chicken has to be one of my favorite things ever. It is so versatile and easy and you can whip up a pile o' paillard in no time at all. We even served it as our secondo piatto at our wedding dinner (served over sauteed chard and following a pasta course of pappardelle with braised rabbit).
Bunny gobbles it up and it can be shredded for babies. This is seriously a main dish that cooks in minutes. Make a salad or steam some veg in the micro (or on the stove), slice up some bread, and you have a meal.
To make this you'll need a meat mallet (or rolling pin) and some plastic wrap.
- 4 boneless chicken breast halves
- olive oil
- sea salt and fresh ground pepper
- one lemon cut into wedges
Place chicken on cutting board and cover with plastic wrap. Starting in center of breast, give chicken a whack (not too hard or chicken will tear and fall apart). You'll see it immediately start to thin out. Continue whacking the breast working from center outwards until it is uniformly thin, about 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. Repeat for remaining breasts. Season each breast with salt and pepper (one side only).
Pour a couple glugs of olive oil in a cast iron skillet, sauté, or grill pan. Heat over medium-high heat. Place paillard in (as many as will fit with room) seasoned side down. Season other side with salt and pepper. Cook for about 2-3 minutes on each side. The paillards should be nicely browned. Serve with lemon wedges.
This also works great with turkey cutlets although they won't be as tender.
Cooked, these keep incredibly well. You can freeze them and then defrost them relatively quickly.
GILDING THE PAILLARD LILY
- Top each paillard with a basil leaf and a slice of fontina (preferably val d'Aosta.) Warm in oven until cheese is melted.
- See above and serve topped with a little warmed marinara sauce.
- Top each paillard with a sage leaf then a slice of prosciutto and a slice of provolone (or fontina). Warm in oven until cheese is melted.
- Top each paillard with a little pesto and a slice or two of fresh buffalo mozarella. Warm in oven until cheese is melted.
So many ways to make such a easy dish even better.