30 Days to a Food Revolution Day 16- Simply…Gluten-free

30 Days to a Food Revolution Day 16- Simply...Gluten-free Welcome to day 16 of 30 Days to a Food Revolution.  Today’s guest blogger is Carol.  Carol Kicinski is a professional recipe developer, freelance food writer, television chef on the nationally syndicated morning show Daytime, cookbook author (Simply…Gluten-free Desserts), manufacturer of a gluten-free flour blend and publisher of the award winning gluten-free blog Simply…Gluten-free.  Rather than looking at the world in terms of what she can’t eat, she celebrates the ABUNDANCE of gluten-free living.

Recipe: Gluten-free Chicken Piccata

Tip: Remove, Restore, Reinvent!

30 Days to a Food Revolution Day 16- Simply...Gluten-free With the increasing availability of packaged gluten-free flour alternatives for all purpose, processed wheat flour, gluten-free cooks have gotten into the habit of substituting one highly processed food item for another.

When I first became gluten-free, the products available to me were nothing I would personally eat.  They lacked refinement, quality and most important, taste.  So I had to re-learn how to cook old favorites and classic dishes.

My technique was simple really.  Remove, restore and reinvent.  Remove the offending ingredient (i.e. the gluten) restore the recipe with something that would actually ADD flavor and nutrients thus reinventing the dish.

Chicken Piccata is a classic for a reason.  It is elegant, simple to prepare and can be made in about 20 minutes.

By removing processed flour (whether it be gluten or gluten-free) and restoring the dish with ground almonds (low carb, higher in protein and unprocessed) the dish is reinvented into something that is not only healthier but, most importantly, just as delicious.  In fact the almonds lend a nuttiness and richness to the chicken, which when cut with lemon results in a luxurious dish that is, in my opinion, superior to the original recipe.

My contribution to the movement started by Jamie Oliver to revolutionize the way American eats is this – Remove – Restore – Reinvent!   Change they way you and your family eats.  Don’t just replace one offending ingredient with another.  Think outside the box.

You may find it ironic that I, as a manufacturer of a gluten-free flour product, would come out against the practice of replacing one processed form of flour for another.   My flour is a refined product which came about when I could not find a commercially available gluten-free flour blend with a delicate enough texture to produce results I was looking for in my finished desserts.  But life is about balance.  If we eat whole, healthy foods the majority of the time, a gluten-free cupcake is not going to kill us.  And if we are going to bake and eat a gluten-free cupcake, well, it may as well be great!

Normally the chicken breasts for Chicken Piccata are butterflied but I simply can’t be bothered.  Besides, pounding out the chicken is a great stress reliever!  As a note the pounded chicken breast looks so much bigger – you fool yourself into thinking you are eating much more than you actually are – a good weight loss tip!

30 Days to a Food Revolution Day 16- Simply...Gluten-free

Gluten (and Grain) Free Chicken Piccata

Ingredients:

4 boneless, skinless, organic, hormone-free chicken breast halves

1 cup raw almonds (or you can use ground almond meal)

¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese

1 teaspoon kosher or sea salt

½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

4 tablespoons olive oil

4 tablespoons unsalted butter – use divided

½ cup dry white wine (or use gluten-free chicken stock – preferably homemade)

3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

¼ cup capers in brine, drained

¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped

Additional lemons for garnish and serving

Directions:

Lay a piece of plastic wrap on a work surface,  place a chicken breast half on top and lay another piece of plastic wrap on top of that.  Pound the chicken breast with a rolling pin or bottom of a heavy skillet until it is about ¼ inch think.  Repeat with remaining chicken breasts.

Put almonds in food processor and process in pulses until the almonds turn into a fine meal.  Be careful not to turn it into paste.  Add the parmesan cheeses, salt and pepper and pulse a couple more times to mix.  If using almond meal, just mix the flour, cheese, salt and pepper together.  Spread the mixture on a large plate.

Rinse the pounded chicken breasts in water and shake off the excess.  Dredge the chicken in the almond mixture, gently pressing the mixture onto the chicken.

Heat a large skillet over medium high heat.  Add the olive oil and 2 tablespoons of butter.  Once the oil is hot and the butter melted, place two prepared chicken breast in the pan – do not over crowd!  Cook for 3 -4 minutes or until they are well browned.  Flip and cook for 3- 4 minutes on the other side.  Remove cooked chicken breasts to a serving dish and cover with foil to keep warm.  You can also place the plate in a warm oven.  Repeat procedure with the remaining chicken breasts.

Add the wine or chicken stock and lemon juice to the pan.  Scrape the pan to incorporate all the browned bits of almond.  Add the capers and cook until the sauce is reduced by about half.  It should be the consistency of light syrup.  Stir in the remaining butter until melted.

Pour the sauce over the chicken breasts, top with chopped parsley and serve with lemon slices or wedges.

Serves 4.

Read more on Simply…Gluten-free!

Don’t forget:

In order to be entered to win one of 7 cookbooks, here’s what you need to do to gather entries into the drawing.  The more you do, the more chances you have to win!

  1. Leave a comment on this blog on as many of the 30 guest food bloggers as you like.  Each comment is an entry.
  2. Sign up for The W.H.O.L.E. Gang newsletter.
  3. Visit that guest blogger’s site and leave a comment there too.
  4. Tweet about this project using both of these in your tweet so I’ll find you  #30days2 #foodrevolution

When the initial 30 days of guest posts are over on June 4th, we’ll pick the winners.

21 Responses to 30 Days to a Food Revolution Day 16- Simply…Gluten-free

  1. Nisrine@Dinners and May 17, 2010 at 2:25 am #

    I love piccata and everything lemony, especially when it's a healthy recipe like this one.

  2. Sarah May 17, 2010 at 3:46 am #

    I adore Chicken Piccata! Thank you for inspiring me to make it at home. I cannot wait to have this for dinner!

    I am learning so much from this 30 days project! THANK YOU!

  3. Michelle May 17, 2010 at 4:07 am #

    This recipe looks really good. Can't wait to make it for my family. Thank you!

  4. Sarah P May 17, 2010 at 6:15 am #

    Sounds delicious – we're in a baked chicken rut these days, so thanks for the motivation to do something new!

  5. mama May 17, 2010 at 6:27 am #

    looks delicious!

  6. Ellen Allard May 17, 2010 at 7:56 am #

    I love your three R's! A great way to creatively approach how to adapt recipes to make them gluten free safe. Can't wait to try your new flour. Best of luck!

    Ellen
    http://www.Iamglutenfree.blogspot.com

  7. Jenna May 17, 2010 at 8:36 am #

    That looks great!

  8. Christa May 17, 2010 at 8:42 am #

    Great recipe! Thanks for sharing! I agree…only removing the gluten is not enough, if it means we're still eating lots of processed foods. Hurray for old favorites re-invented and improved!

  9. Alta May 17, 2010 at 9:00 am #

    Long before I knew how to cook, much less cook gluten-free, I actually made a version of chicken piccata, gluten-free, for my brother! Of course, mine wasn't as healthy as yours – with your use of almond flours, I can only imagine how great this is. My husband loves chicken piccata – he's going to be happy with me when I add this to our menu soon!

  10. Jennifer R. May 17, 2010 at 10:44 am #

    yum, yum, yum — looks sooo delicious! I will add this to my weekly menu. Thanks!

  11. glutenfreeforgood May 17, 2010 at 2:07 pm #

    This sounds wonderful and I must admit, any recipe that calls for 1/4 cup of capers is a winner in my book! Not to forget the almonds and Parmesan cheese. Wow, what a nice combination of wonderful ingredients! Can't wait to try this.

    Melissa

  12. Janette May 17, 2010 at 2:21 pm #

    I'm a vegetarian – I wonder if I can do the recipe with tofu? Tempeh?

  13. kelly cooper May 17, 2010 at 7:47 pm #

    oh this looks sooooo good! and I love your philosophy!

    – Remove – Restore – Reinvent!

  14. Kelli May 17, 2010 at 9:00 pm #

    I love that she is honest about processed flour.

  15. Aubree Cherie May 18, 2010 at 4:50 am #

    I love this recipe! I've been trying to get more and more creative with chicken lately, but I've been really afraid to try anything 'breaded' that's gluten free. This will be a fun one to try!

    ~Aubree Cherie

  16. gfe--gluten free eas May 18, 2010 at 11:26 am #

    Nice job, Carol! And, oh my goodness on the chicken piccata … so healthy AND droolworthy! Definitely going on my menu soon. I love how you are sharing the gluten-free and healthy word all over these days. And, if you did it completely without dessert … EVER … who would listen? Right? ;-)

    Thanks, Carol!

    Shirley

  17. Carol, Simply...Glut May 20, 2010 at 7:41 pm #

    Janette – I think you could do with tofu. If you try, please let me know. I use the same basic methos for all sorts of things, fish, turkey, etc so why not tofu?

  18. Heather May 24, 2010 at 10:47 am #

    I've been using GF bread crumbs for breading chicken, but I can't wait to try almond meal. Sounds and looks great!

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