Chicken with a Garlic, Anchovy, Caper and Lemon Sauce

I’m in Ortigia, a small island off the coast of Siracusa, Sicily. A swordfish dish I ate the first night here in local restaurant included the ingredients in this dish.

Today we decided to eat in the apartment we rented. So I bought everything I needed in a local market to cook at home for lunch. I hope you enjoy it. We did.

If you’re hungry and don’t have much time to cook, this flavorful chicken dish will be in your mouth in about 15 minutes.

I’m a breast guy but you can use thighs if you want.

The chicken is bathed in a rich sauce enhanced by the anchovy umami, garlic, capers and freshened with a squeeze of lemon. Add a little chile flakes to give a little sparkle as you finish each bite.

After you plate the chicken and pour all the sauce on top, sprinkle the chopped parsley all over for some color appeal.

Buon appetito!

—Gianni

Ingredients

  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast or your favorite part
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 3 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2-3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3-4 anchovy fillets, roughly chopped
  • 2 tablespoons drained capers
  • pinch of chile flakes (optional)
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • fresh parsley, chopped for garnish

Directions

  1. Season the chicken with salt and pepper on both sides.
  2. Put a large skillet over medium-high heat and add the olive oil and 3 smashed garlic cloves.
  3. When the garlic starts to take on color add the chicken and saute until a golden crust starts to form, about 5 minutes.
  4. Turn the chicken over and saute for another 5 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.
  5. Remove the chicken to a plate and set it aside. Remove the garlic cloves.
  6. Add the anchovies, capers and minced garlic to the hot pan and saute until the garlic just becomes translucent. Be sure to break up the anchovies so that they dissolve completely.
  7. Add the juice of 1/2 a lemon and scrape the fond, the brown bits on the bottom of pan, and stir until they are melted into the sauce. (If you need more sauce, add some dry white wine, chicken stock or water.)
  8. Put the chicken back in the hot pan, spoon sauce all over and heat the chicken for about a minute more.
  9. Plate the chicken, pour the sauce on top and sprinkle chopped parsley all over.
  10. Serve immediately with your favorite sides

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