Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Barefoot Bloggers: Sandwich de Parmesan Chicken with Lemon Vinaigrette Salad

Twice each month, the Barefoot Bloggers select and make a recipe by Ina Garten, the Barefoot Contessa, and post our results on our blogs, and then discuss it on the group blog. This group is a welcome option for those of us who don't necessarily turn out the prettiest cakes, brave and daring confections, or bakery wonders. Sometimes a challenge is terrific with just simple, good food, with a stick of butter.

Challenge Two for June 2008 was a Parmesan chicken recipe, selected by Megan of My Baking Adventures. At first I had a less than gung ho reaction because I pictured breaded chicken in tomato sauce and cheese. But no, Ina's recipe is lighter and livelier (unusual for her!) and, as soon as I read it, I thought would make a wonderful little sandwich.

My contribution to the challenge is Sandwich de Parmesan Poulet avec Citron Vinaigrette Salade. I don't speak a lick of French, so that's a total affectation.

Away we go!

First, we're going to bread the chicken. I wanted thin, tender strips, so I just used two chicken tenders, and flattened them a bit more. I set up a small plate of flour, bread crumbs seasoned with Penzey's and fresh Parmesan, and a beaten egg. Dip the chicken in flour, then egg, and finally bread crumbs and Parmesan. In the pic below, I've already got my salad greens chopped and dressed, with a bit of extra lemon vinaigrette on the side.

Add the breaded chicken tenders to a pan with a pat of butter and a splash olive oil. Pan fry on each side until golden brown. These cooked very quickly due to the thinness. First one side ...

... then the other. Hey, these are looking pretty good! I'm pleased with myself.

I had a toasted rosemary baguette ready, and I'd already made the lemon vinaigrette and chopped salad greens. I lightly dressed the greens, put them on the toasted roll, added a chicken Parmesan tender, and then sprinkled the chicken liberally with more vinaigrette. I put the remainder of a small portion in an egg cup.

Voila! A sandwich of Parmesan chicken with lemon dressed salad greens. It was QUITE good and I'm pleased I made it. I changed the original recipe by presenting it as a sandwich instead of an entree, however, the biggest adaptation I made was with the lemon vinaigrette. It's quite a simple recipe really, just olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper. When I read it, I thought "well you know, I *just* made Preserved Meyer Lemons (May 2008 issue of Gourmet magazine), which are loaded with salt and olive oil, so I thought why not use some of my newly preserved lemon? The ingredients are spot on.

I poured a splash of olive oil in a small blender cup, added 1/8 of a preserved lemon slice (half of a lemon quarter), the juice of half a lemon, lots of ground pepper, and a tiny smidgen of garlic aoili to emulsify it. No added salt because the preserved lemon was salty. I blended it up and it was just excellent. That salty preserved lemon contrasted nicely with the rich oil and tart lemon juice, and barely any was needed. I'll use that again for sure. Mmm, on fish!

Verdict: Simple and delicious
Skill: Not much of any, really
Repeat: Definitely


  1. Your lemon vinaigrette sounds amazing! I will have to try this as a sandwich next time...sounds super tasty!

  2. it looks and sounds delicious! great idea to turn it into a sandwich!

  3. I didn't even think sandwich--great job! Love the preserved lemons too--you took it to all whole new level AND gave it a fancy name! Got to take a look at your site--great pictures and I love the name!

  4. Love the verdict. You know, I think I want your sandwich NOW. It looks so very good.

  5. wow, sounds great!! the sandwich idea is fantastic, and that vinaigrette really sounds amazing. nice job!

  6. What a fancy sandwich! :)
    Where did you find Meyer lemons? I cant seem to ever find any.

  7. Hi! I'm lucky enough that my sister's next door neighbor, in Marin County, has a tree full of them. She just gave me a big bag of them and they were going soft quickly (I think past their prime) and preserving them seemed the way to go. I thought they were a cool weather thing, but perhaps Marin County's weather is cool enough to get them this late in the year. VERY occasionally, I see a package of four at Trader Joe's, but I think not recently -- probably past their picking season.