Sautéed Chicken with Olives, Capers and Roasted Lemons

This piquant dish from Lidia Bastianich's Missouri restaurant, Lidia's Kansas City, is one of our favorite ways to prepare skinless chicken breasts.

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  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 4


  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 2 lemons, sliced 1/4-inch thick
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • Two 5-ounce bags baby spinach
  • 2 tablespoons plain dry bread crumbs
  • Four 6-ounce skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour, for dusting
  • 1/2 cup pitted green Sicilian or Spanish olives, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons drained capers
  • 1 cup chicken stock or low-sodium broth
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small dice
  • 2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley

How to make this recipe

  1. Preheat the oven to 375°. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Drizzle olive oil on the parchment, then arrange the lemon slices in a single layer. Drizzle the lemons lightly with oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast for about 20 minutes, until the lemons begin to brown around the edges.

  2. Meanwhile, heat a large, deep skillet. Add the spinach and cook over high heat, tossing, until wilted, about 2 minutes. Transfer the spinach to a strainer; press out the liquid. Wipe out the skillet and heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in it. Add the bread crumbs and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until toasted, 2 minutes. Add the spinach, season with salt and pepper and cook for 1 minute.

  3. In a deep medium skillet, heat the remaining 1/4 cup of oil. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and dust with the flour, shaking off the excess. Cook the chicken over high heat, turning once, until golden, about 6 minutes. Add the olives, capers and stock and bring to a boil. Cook over high heat until the stock is reduced by about two-thirds, about 5 minutes. Add the roasted lemons, butter and parsley, season with salt and pepper and simmer just until the chicken is cooked through, about 1 minute.

  4. Transfer the chicken to plates and spoon the sauce on top. Serve the spinach on the side.

Suggested Pairing

Rosato (an Italian rosé).

Contributed By Photo © Tina Rupp Published March 2007

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