Chicken Cutlets and Carrots with Mint Pesto
If the mint in your garden explodes in the summer, turn to this fresh-tasting (and gluten-free) dish to use up the abundant harvest. The mint pesto is also great with fish and lamb.
For the mint pesto:
- 1/4 cup (1/4 oz./8 g) packed fresh mint leaves
- 1/4 cup (1 oz./30 g) toasted whole almonds
- 1/2 small shallot
- 1/4 cup (2 fl. oz./60 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 1/2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
- 3/4 lb. (375 g) chicken breast cutlets
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 shallot, minced
- Red pepper flakes, to taste
- 2 carrots, shredded (about 2 1/4 cups/6 oz./185 g)
- 2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
- Hot water, if needed
- Fresh mint leaves, cut into thin slices for garnish
To make the mint pesto, in a food processor, combine the mint, almonds and shallot and process until finely ground. With the machine running, gradually add the oil. Mix in the lemon juice, and then season to taste with salt and pepper. Use immediately, or cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Bring to room temperature before serving.
In a large nonstick fry pan over medium-high heat, warm 1 Tbs. of the oil. Sprinkle the chicken with salt and pepper and add to the fry pan. Sauté until cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer the chicken to a warmed plate.
Add the remaining 1 Tbs. oil to the same fry pan, and then add the shallot and a pinch of pepper flakes. Sauté until the shallot begins to soften, about 1 minute. Add the carrots and sprinkle lightly with salt and black pepper. Sauté until the carrots are crisp-tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the lemon juice and any juices from the plate holding the chicken. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
Divide the carrots between 2 warmed plates. Top with the chicken. Thin the pesto with a little hot water if desired. Spoon the pesto over the chicken, sprinkle with sliced mint and serve immediately. Serves 2.
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Weeknight Gluten Free, by Kristine Kidd (Weldon Owen, 2013)