TOP: CHOPPED SAGE AND GARLIC. Middle: beets and sweet potatoes with sage, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper, ready to roast. Bottom: a finished plate of chicken paillards topped with spinach, with roasted beets and sweet potatoes on the side.

TOP: CHOPPED SAGE AND GARLIC. Middle: beets and sweet potatoes with sage, garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper, ready to roast. Bottom: a finished plate of chicken paillards topped with spinach, with roasted beets and sweet potatoes on the side.

Chicken paillards are so easy to make, and a great way to create a delicious chicken dinner in just a few minutes. All you need to do is butterfly your chicken breasts, then pound each one to 1/8th of an inch thick.

To butterfly, lay your chicken breast on a flat surface. Slice the breast top-to-bottom, making sure to only plunge your knife half-way into the breast. Pull each side of the slice outward, as if you are “opening” the chicken breast, essentially doubling the width of the breast and leaving it all in one piece. Next, take the butterflied breast and put it between two pieces of plastic wrap, making sure there is plenty of space around the breast to expand it. Take a kitchen mallet and pound the breast until it is 1/8th of an inch thick, and voila — your paillard is ready for a hot pan.

For this recipe, the chicken is paired with sage-roasted golden beets and sweet potatoes, and a small handful of spinach for a little extra color and texture.

Chicken paillards with roasted beets and sweets

4 Chicken breasts, pounded thin
2 Sweet potatoes, chopped
2 Golden beets, peeled & chopped
5 Cloves of garlic, sliced
8 Sage leaves — 5 chopped, 3 whole
1 Handful of raw baby spinach
2 tablespoons of butter
2 tablespoons of olive oil
Salt and Pepper to taste

Set your oven to 400 degrees. Next, take your chopped beets and sweets and toss them into a baking dish. Over the top, sprinkle your 5 cloves of chopped garlic and your 5 chopped sage leaves. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, and drizzle with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Give it a quick stir and pop the beets and sweets in the oven for 40 minutes.

Once the 40 minutes is up, turn the oven off. You can keep the beets and sweets in the oven while you fry up your paillards, or take them out and let them cool a bit. It’s up to you!

The paillards take just a couple of minutes each to cook. First, set a medium-sized skillet on mediumhigh heat. Next, add your 2 tablespoons of butter, 1 tablespoon of olive oil and your 3 whole sage leaves. Once the butter has melted and the sage is sizzling, add your first piece of chicken. Fry it for about one minute on each side (more, if your chicken is a little thick) and then plate it. Do the same for the second piece.

Once each piece of chicken is done, top the chicken with raw baby spinach, and add some of your beets and sweets with garlic and sage on the side. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

This is one aromatic, hearty and delicious meal. The sage really brings out the richness of the chicken and sweet potatoes, and the texture and flavor of the golden beets is just unmatched. The spinach adds just a touch of brightness and crunch. Enjoy!

ALICIA BANE is wire editor for The Times Record, and a food blogger. You can find more recipes from her at eeshaeats.wordpress.com


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