Crisp Chicken with Fennel-Mushroom Salad
- SERVINGS: 4
A mandoline makes the job of thinly slicing the fennel and mushrooms much easier. Inexpensive plastic models are available at most kitchenware stores.
- 2 fennel bulbs—halved, cored and sliced paper thin crosswise, feathery tops finely chopped
- 1/2 pound cremini mushrooms, sliced paper thin lengthwise
- 1/2 cup (tightly packed) flat-leaf parsley leaves
- 2 tablespoons snipped chives
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- 4 medium boneless chicken breast halves
- 1 tablespoon fennel seeds, coarsely ground
- 1 cup shaved Parmesan cheese (from a 2-ounce chunk)
- In a large bowl, toss the fennel with the mushrooms, parsley, chives, lemon juice and 3 tablespoons of the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.
- Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil in a large cast-iron skillet. Season the chicken on both sides with the fennel seeds and salt and pepper and add to the skillet, skin side down. Cook over moderate heat, turning once, until golden, crisp and cooked through, about 15 minutes.
- Transfer the chicken to plates and mound the fennel salad alongside. Scatter the Parmesan shavings over the salad and serve immediately.
The mushrooms and fennel in this recipe point to a wine that also has earthy flavors and hints of licorice: Chianti Classico.
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Congratulations to Mei Lin, winner of Top Chef Season 12.