Living in Savory

Cacio e Pepe with Meyer Lemon and Pan-Fried Chicken

Hello and happy Wednesday! Hump Day! 🐪 Does anyone else remember that gieco commercial? I love that camel…

Anyway! Today I have a great mid-week recipe that’s super easy and fast! This Cacio e Pepe with Meyer lemon and a fast pan-fried chicken breast is just as yummy as it sounds. The creamy, lemony pasta paired with the crispy chicken. O.M.G. It’s like spring in your mouth.

So let’s get going. Here’s what you’ll need:

For the pan-fried chicken:

  • 1 pound chicken cutlets (or thin sliced chicken breast)
  • Egg wash (1 egg with 1 tbls water)
  • Panko Bread crumbs
  • 2 tbsp canola oil

For the Cacio e Pepe:

  • 1 pound thin pasta, like spaghetti, cooked al dente
  • 2 tsp salt, separated
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 tsp garlic, chopped
  • 1 tsp red pepper flake
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1/3 Cup shredded parmesan
  • 1/3 Cup Meyer Lemon juice (2x lemons)
  • 1 tbsp black pepper
  • 1 tbsp chopped parsley
  • 1/2 cup Pasta water, more as necessary

Start by preheating your oven to 200F and place a rack in the oven. {this is for the chicken once it is done in the pan.}

Next, set up your chicken assembly line: you’ll need 1 beaten egg with a tablespoon of water, breadcrumbs (I used Panko bread crumbs), and your chicken.

I bought boneless, skinless, chicken cutlets at my grocery store, but you can certainly butterfly chicken breasts (i.e. cut them in half   length wise to get 2 thin breasts).

Start by heating 2 tablespoons of oil in a skillet over medium heat as then seasoning your chicken breasts with salt.  Next, dip the chicken breast into the egg mixture and then coat with bread crumbs. Once the chicken is coated, you may need to use your fingers to press the breadcrumbs onto the chicken, place in the heated oil and pan fry for 2-3 minutes per side, or until golden brown and delicious.

Move the finished chicken to the oven rack to keep warm.

Meanwhile, heat a pot of water over high heat until it is at a boil. Add 2 teaspoons of salt to the boiling water, then follow with pasta. I used spaghetti for this recipe, but you can use whatever long pasta you would like. Cook the pasta until just shy of al dente. You want the pasta to still have a bit of a bite.

While the pasta is cooking, clean out the skillet you used for the chicken and return to med-low heat, add 1 tablespoon of olive oil and add 4 tsp of chopped garlic along with 1 tsp red pepper flake. Cook in the oil for about a minute.

When your pasta is just al dente, add the pasta (undrained) directly to the skillet with the garlic/pepper. Toss to coat with the garlic and fat. Turn off the heat.

Now add 1/3 Cup of shredded parmesan cheese, 1/3 cup of Meyer lemon juice (about 2 lemons), 1 tsp of salt (or more to taste), 1 tablespoon of fresh ground pepper, 1 tablespoon chopped parsley, 2 tablespoons of butter, and follow with 1/2 cup of remaining pasta water. Toss to coat and mix into the pasta.

{Add more pasta water as necessary to achieve desired consistency. The pasta should be coated with the sauce, but not liquid-y.}

Serve in bowls, with a pan fried chicken breast and a lemon wedge. Add a side salad to make it a meal!

Enjoy!

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