Panko gives foods an extra-crunchy coating. It is bland, so sesame seeds and other seasonings provide a nice flavor boost here. Using aluminum foil placed directly on the oven rack, instead of a pan, helps the chicken brown better and cook through at the same time. The fine mist of cooking spray used to coat the chicken lets you make a great low-fat version of a fried favorite.
- 1 tsp. canola oil
- 1 cup panko
- 2 tsp. sesame seeds
- 1/2 tsp. sweet paprika
- 1/4 tsp. onion powder
- 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
- 1/8 tsp. freshly ground white or black pepper
- 1 egg white
- 1 to 1 1/4 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut with the grain into strips 3/4 inch wide
- Canola oil cooking spray
Remove the center rack from an oven and cover it with a sheet of aluminum foil, leaving 1 inch uncovered on all sides so that heat can freely circulate once the rack is returned to the oven. Brush the foil lightly with the canola oil and set the prepared rack aside. Preheat the oven to 450°F.
In a wide, shallow dish, stir together the panko, sesame seeds, paprika, onion powder, salt and pepper. In another dish, beat the egg white until foamy. Roll 1 piece of the chicken in the egg white; shake it lightly to release the excess. Then roll it in the seasoned panko, coating evenly and pressing with your fingers to help the mixture adhere. Place the chicken on a plate and repeat until all the chicken is coated.
One by one, coat the chicken on all sides with cooking spray and place the pieces in a single layer on the prepared oven rack. Slide the rack into the center of the oven. Bake the chicken until the coating on the bottom is light golden brown, about 10 minutes. Using tongs, turn the chicken over and continue to bake until the pieces are golden brown all over and the meat is opaque in the center, 10 to 12 minutes more. Transfer the chicken to a platter and let rest for 10 to 15 minutes. The coating becomes crisper as it sits. Serve warm. Serves 4.