Lemon and garlic are two of my favorite ways to add a lot of flavor to food and they pair really well with chicken so when I saw this Lemon-Artichoke Chicken recipe in the Jan/Feb 2009 Clean Eating magazine I knew I had to try it. I really like Clean Eating magazine, as a source for healthy, nutritious and "clean" recipes, in fact I marked a few recipes in this issue to try. This one was in their "The Tasty Cucina Redone" article, all about making over Italian classics to have more nutrients and less calories and fat.
Clean Eating says: "Quick-cooked thin chicken cutlets are often sauteed in a pool of olive oil and finished with butter. But by dredging your chicken in seasoned whole-wheat flour and cooking it on a moderately hot skillet misted with olive oil cooking spray, you can still get all the great flavor without the fat."
Julie O'Hara, Clean Eating Magazine, Jan/Feb 2009
Serves 4 / Hands-on time 32 min, Total time 32 min
1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 Tbsp dried oregano
Freshly ground black pepper
1/4 tsp sea salt or coarse kosher salt, plus additional for seasoning (to taste)
1 lb thin chicken cutlets
olive oil cooking spray
1/2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, cut lengthwise and thinly sliced
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth
1 (14 oz) can artichoke hearts, drained and cut into sixths
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (about 2 lemons)
1 tsp lemon zest
2 Tbsp fresh parsley, chopped, for garnish
In a shallow bowl, thoroughly combine flour, oregano, pepper and 1/4 tsp salt. Dredge each chicken cutlet in flour mixture, shake off excess and place on a plate. Coat a large nonstick skillet with cooking spray and heat on medium to medium high, so skillet is hot but not smoking. Add 1/2 the chicken cutlets and cook 3-5 minutes per side, until lightly browned and cooked through. Transfer to a clean serving plate and repeat with the remaining cutlets, coating the skillet once more with cooking spray. Cover your serving plate with foil to keep the chicken warm. Adjust temperature to medium-low and heat oil. Place onion in pan and cook, stirring frequently until soft and golden, about 5-6 minutes. Add garlic, cooking for 1 minute, stirring constantly; then chicken broth, bringing it to a simmer; followed by artichokes, lemon juice and zest, simmering for 2-3 minutes until heated through and slightly thickened. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Pour artichoke mixture over chicken cutlets, sprinkle with parsley and serve.
Nutrients per serving (4 oz chicken, 1/2 cup artichoke mixture): Cals: 220, Total Fat: 4.5g, Sat Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Omega-3s: 90mg, Omega-6s: 700mg, Carbs: 20g, Fiber: 2g, Sugars: 2g, Protein: 27g, Sodium: 420 mg, Cholesterol: 65mg
Notes/Results: Great! A lighter, brighter version of the Chicken Piccata recipe I like to order at the Italian restaurant near my house with definitely much less oil and butter but still lots of great flavor. This is a very tangy dish from the lemon and artichoke hearts and I am a fan of tangy. (BTW: The canned artichoke hearts I bought must have been smaller than the ones the author used. They would not have cut well into sixths and I just cut them in half.) I paired it with some whole wheat spaghetti with a little lemon, parsley and a just touch of olive oil, and a simple green salad on the side. It was pretty quick to prepare (about 30 minutes total), went together easily and would be simple enough for a weeknight dinner but still nice enough to serve to company. I like the fact that this lightened-up dish tastes good enough to not make me feel like I am depriving myself in any way and will make it again.