Chicken Breasts Amandine

Serves 4.

Note: The combination of sliced almonds, panko breadcrumbs and cornstarch gives a nutty, super-crunchy coating. Panko breadcrumbs have larger, lighter flakes than the traditional breadcrumb. From "The Best Simple Recipes," by America's Test Kitchen.

• 6 thin-cut boneless, skinless chicken cutlets, about 1 1/4 lb. (see below for how to make cutlets)

• 1/2 c. flour

• 2 eggs

• 1 1/2 c. sliced almonds

• 3/4 c. panko breadcrumbs (see Note)

• 1 tsp. cornstarch

• Salt and pepper

• 1/2 c vegetable oil, divided


To make your own chicken cutlets: You usually can find chicken cutlets at the supermarket, but they are often small or expensive. To do it yourself, place each chicken breast on a cutting board and, placing one hand on top of the breast to hold it steady, use a chef's knife to slice the meat in half horizontally. If you want thinner cutlets, cover each piece with plastic wrap and pound to your desired thickness. To make cutting the soft meat a little easier, you can freeze it until firm but not completely frozen, about 20 minutes.

To make chicken almandine: Spread flour in a shallow dish. Beat eggs in second shallow dish. Combine almonds, breadcrumbs and cornstarch in third shallow dish.

Pat chicken dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper. One at a time, coat cutlets lightly with flour, dip in egg, and dredge in almond mixture, pressing to adhere.

Heat 1/4 cup oil in large nonstick skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Cook half of cutlets until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Drain on paper towel-lined plate. Wipe out skillet and repeat with remaining oil and cutlets. Serve.