Sunday, February 6, 2011

Cookbook Challenge - Week 6 - Walnut Crusted Chicken Breasts

Again this week I'm cooking from my new favorite - Power Foods: 150 Delicious Recipes with the 38 Healthiest Ingredients.  I had my parents and my aunt over for dinner and served this - it is now their new favorite meal to request (and in fact I'm making it again tonight for them!). It also gave me a chance to try out using a full size food processor. I had a small one for years, used it a few times but found it more trouble than it was worth to get out, assemble, then clean for what it could accomplish, it wasn't saving me any time. The past several months I've been contemplating getting a large one, but I really hated the thought of spending that much money and then maybe not liking it or not using it enough to justify it. I had this conversation with my friend Maddie and she offered to let me borrow her large food processor for awhile so I could test it out. This recipe was the perfect one for it. I only adapted it slightly, so here's my version below:

Walnut Crusted Chicken Breasts
serves 4

  • 4 skinless boneless chicken breast cutlets - 4-6 ounces each (if you don't have cutlets, pound regular boneless skinless chicken breasts to be a thinner and even thickness)
  • 2 slices whole grain bread (if you don't have any 'day old' bread that has dried out, toast it in a 375 degree oven for a few minutes, turn off the oven and leave the bread in there for 10 minutes - it will dry).
  • 1/3 cup walnuts
  • 2 TB freshly grated Parmesan
  • coarse sea salt and fresh ground pepper
  • 1 large egg white
  • 1 TB olive oil
  • 1 lemon, sliced
  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  • In a food processor bread, walnuts and parmesan, season with salt and pepper. Process until fine breadcrumbs form. Transfer to a shallow bowl or plate. 
  • In another shallow bowl, beat egg white until frothy.
  • Season chicken with salt and pepper. Dip each breast into egg white and then into breadcrumbs, pressing to adhere.
  • In a large skillet heat oil over medium heat. Add chicken and cook until lightly browned, 1-3 minutes each side. 
  • If your skillet is ovenproof, put skillet in oven, if not, use a baking sheet (I use my Pampered Chef stoneware bar pan). Bake until chicken is golden brown and cooked through, 8-12 minutes.
  • Remove chicken from oven, squeeze a bit of lemon juice over the breasts and serve.
note - their recipe used 6-8oz breasts rather than 4-6oz, so these calculations are probably a little high for my recipe as written I also used olive oil where they used grapeseed oil. 
per serving: 331 calories, 1.9g saturated fat, 9.6g unsaturated fat, 101mg cholesterol, 8.5g carbs, 44g protein, 603mg sodium, 1.6g fiber.

I served this dish with another recipe from the book, Farro and Mushroom Dressing. This recipe was also a huge hit and we enjoyed leftovers for a couple days with other meals too! I did substitute baby bellas instead of cremini, I did not use ham, and I substituted low sodium chicken broth for the white wine because I didn't have any.

We also had a salad and roasted asparagus with it as well.


  1. This sounds delicious...and I'm going to try it this week. I don't have a large food processor anymore either, so I've substituted using my blender with success.

  2. Sounds great! I use my large food processor ALL of the time and I can't imagine cooking for long without it.

  3. Madeline - I often substitute and use my blender too!

    I'm going to see how much I use the food processor to see if it is worth investing in one. Melissa - I'd love to hear what you use yours for all the time. I've always cut veggies by hand, but could see how this could really make things go quickly.