One of my most favorite ways to eat chicken. I only make it several times a year, but when I do it never lasts long. I’m also on a lemon and lime kick lately. This works for that craving because Chicken Francese is all about the lemon.
I’m all about tweaking recipes and making them all your own. But when it comes to Chicken Francese, the simplest way is the best. I’ve seen people take the basic, simple recipe and tweak it to areas that no longer resemble the original dish. They will add diced onion, parmesan cheese, garlic, and basil. And that’s fine. I tweak many a recipe from the original version. But for me and my family, we like the authentic flavor of this dish. The dominant flavor in this dish is the lemon, and I don’t like it compromised by any other strong flavor like garlic or onion.
But if you truly do have the need to tweak it, have at it. It’s simple enough that you can work it to make it whatever works for you. Just don’t skimp on the lemon!
Serves 4 – 6 (*See Note)
- 4 Boneless and Skinless Chicken Breasts
- 1 14.5 oz. Can Low Sodium Chicken Broth
- 3 Large Eggs
- 1 Cup Flour (or more if needed for breading)
- 1/4 Olive Oil
- 3 Lemons
- 1 Teaspoon Salt
- 1 Teaspoon Freshly Ground Black Pepper
- 3 Tbsp. Butter
- 1/4 Chopped Fresh Parsley
Trim chicken breasts of any fat. Take each breast and flatten it out with a mallet. If the breasts are very thick, you will want to filet them before pounding them out thin. I had four thick breasts, which I had to filet and then pound out thin.
Set the chicken to the side and then prepare your work station for dipping and flouring. Crack the eggs into a shallow bowl and beat together well. You can add a teaspoon of cool water to the eggs to help thin them out a bit. In a separate shallow bowl add your flour and season with your salt and pepper. Stir to combine.
Dip each chicken breast first in the flour, then the egg, and then the flour again, pressing to make sure you get a nice even coat. Set each breast on a plate until you finish dipping and breading each one.
Set the oven to 350 degrees.
In a non-stick skillet, add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and set the heat to medium. Once hot, add two chicken breasts at a time and cook until just done on each side. You want them to be a very light golden brown. We are not looking for a deep brown color to these. Cook each breast until just about done. Remove to a casserole dish and continue browning each chicken breast, continuing to add oil 2 tablespoons at a time as needed. Once you are done, place the casserole dish with the chicken in the oven uncovered and allow to cook for 10 – 12 minutes.
Meanwhile wipe out the skillet with some paper towels. You don’t want to clean the pan completely, but you do want to remove all that flour that has browned in the bottom. You won’t remove the flavor by doing this, but you will allow yourself to have a nice lemon colored sauce.
Set burner to medium heat and pour in your chicken broth. Add some salt and pepper if you feel it needs it. Squeeze in the juice of two lemons. Bring to a boil and then quickly whisk in about 1 teaspoon of flour. Add in the 3 tablespoons of butter and whisk again. Turn the heat down to simmer and allow to reduce to almost half.
Once the sauce is done, add the chopped fresh parsley and stir. Set the chicken breasts out on a rimmed platter or baking dish, and pour the sauce all over the top of each breast.
Take your last lemon and slice it thin, with the skin on. Place pieces of sliced lemon across the whole dish and serve.
Note: If you are using 4 thin chicken breasts, even before pounding them thin, you will serve about 4 with this dish. If you are using 4 thick cut breasts like I used, you should filet them into 8 breasts and then pound each thin.