Aug 20, 2014 6:30 PM by Jennifer English
One of the things that I had the great pleasure to do this summer was re-visit some of my very favorite, vintage cooking magazines. I inherited my grandmothers collection of Gourmet & Food & Wine magazines. Many have her carefully written in recipe "reviews" noting which ones were a "success" and which were "flops". My culinary inheritance also includes my grandmothers love of good food, passion for entertaining and cooking for others. I also got her "taste." This last gift is one which brings me great pleasure on a daily basis. I found a recipe while summer reading through an old Food & Wine in a story called Lazy Days Menus and I suspected that it would fit right in to our own "Too Hot to Cook & Too Hot to Eat" menu planner in Tucson.
The recipe was for a delicious sounding Sesame-Fried Lemon Chicken that I remember my Nana making. When I made this dish, I added a bit more lemon zest. I also enhanced the season to taste direction and some more heat to my test batch. I am presenting the traditional, original recipe and encourage you and your family to imagine haw this near-perfect dish could be made even better. In other words, seasoned to your taste.
1 1/2 c. milk
2 1/2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
1/4 c. plus 2 tbsp. yellow cornmeal
1/4 c. plus 2 tbsp. flour
1/4 c. plus 1 1/2 tsp. sesame seeds
2 tsp. grated lemon zest
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. fresh, ground pepper
3 tbsp. unsalted butter
3 tbsp. vegetable oil
3/4 c. chicken stock or canned broth
3/4 c. heavy cream
1 tbsp. chopped chives
In a pyrex glass baking dish combine milk and 1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice. Add chicken and marinate, covered, in the refrigerator for about an hour.
In another bowl combine cornmeal, flour, sesame seeds, salt, lemon zest and pepper.
Remove chicken from milk but DO NOT PAT DRY. Coat chicken in cornmeal mixture.
In a large pan, combine oil and butter, allowing butter to melt but careful not to burn.
Add chicken and fry to deep golden brown. Drain on paper towels.
For sauce: Add chicken stock and bring to simmer over moderate heat scraping up any brown bits in pan. Add cream, chives and remaining tablespoon of lemon juice and boil until gravy thickens slightly.