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Scallopine in Lemon-Caper Sauce

Updated February 23, 2016
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Cerignolas are large green olives, each the size of a plump almond, with a very nutty, buttery flavor. They are usually kept in brine. If you cannot find them, other brined green olives will do. But use the ones with pits, which you will remove. They have more flavor.

Scallopine

One thing you will need is a meat mallet with both smooth and toothed sides. It doesn’t have to be a large and heavy professional chef’s model–a smaller “home version” will do.

Veal scallopine.

Classically, veal scallopine are thin slices of veal cut across the grain from an individual muscle that has been completely trimmed of fat and connective tissue. Veal scallopine are cut about ¼ inch thick, then pounded to about 1/8 inch. To serve four, start with twelve 2-ounce veal slices each about ¼ inch thick. Place the slices, two at a time, between two sheets of plastic wrap and pound them several times with the toothed side of a meat mallet. Switch to the smooth side of the mallet and pound the scallopine to a thickness of about 1/8 inch. (If the plastic wrap starts to look tattered, replace it with two new sheets.) Proceed with the recipe.

Chicken scallopine.

To serve four, start with four 6-ounce boneless and skinless chicken-breast halves. (If the chicken breasts you are working with have the “filet”–the long strip of meat that runs the length of the underside of the breast–do your best to keep it attached to the breast as you cut and pound them.) Cut each breast crosswise on the bias into two more or less equal pieces. Place the pieces, two at a time, between two sheets of plastic wrap and pound them with the smooth side of a meat mallet to a thickness of about ¼ inch. Proceed with the recipe.

Pork scallopine.

To serve four, start with eight 3-ounce slices of boneless center-cut pork loin completely trimmed of fat. Place the slices, two at a time, between two sheets of plastic wrap and pound them several times with the toothed side of a meat mallet. Switch to the smooth side of the mallet and pound the scallopine to a thickness of about ¼ inch. (If the plastic wrap starts to look tattered, replace it with two new sheets.) Proceed with the recipe.

Turkey scallopine.

To serve four, start with eight 3-ounce turkey cutlets. (Most turkey cutlets are sold precut in supermarket meat cases; come as close as you can to these weights.) Place the slices, two at a time, between two sheets of plastic wrap and pound them with the smooth side of a meat mallet to a thickness of about 1/ 4 inch. Proceed with the recipe.

Makes4 servings

Cooking Methodsauteeing

CostModerate

Moderate

Total Timeunder 1 hour

One Pot MealYes

OccasionCasual Dinner Party, Formal Dinner Party

Recipe Coursemain course

Dietary Considerationmain course

Mealdinner

Taste and Texturemeaty, salty, tart

Ingredients

  • 2 lemons
  • 4 servings veal, chicken, turkey or pork scallopine (see Note)
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • All-purpose flour
  • 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 10 large green olives (preferably Cerignola), cut away from the pit in wide strips (about 1/2 cup)
  • ¼ cup small capers in brine, drained
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 1 cup Chicken Stock  or canned reduced-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley

Instructions

Squeeze the juice from one and a half of the lemons and reserve. Lay the remaining half-lemon flat side down and cut into very thin slices with a paring knife. Remove the pits and set the lemon slices aside.

Season the scallopine with salt and pepper. Dredge in flour to coat both sides lightly and tap off excess flour. Heat 3 tablespoons of the olive oil and 2 tablespoons of the butter in a wide, heavy skillet over medium heat until the butter is foaming. Add as many of the scallopine as will fit without touching and cook until golden brown on the underside, about 3 minutes. Flip and cook until the second side is lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Remove and drain on paper towels. Repeat with remaining scallopine.

Remove all scallopine from the pan. Pour off the fat and carefully wipe out the skillet with a wad of paper towels. Pour in the remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil and add the remaining 4 tablespoons butter, the garlic, and lemon slices. Cook, scraping the bottom of the skillet, until the garlic is golden brown, about 3 minutes. Scoop out the lemon slices and set aside. Scatter the olives and capers into the skillet and cook, stirring gently, until they begin to sizzle, about 4 minutes. Pour in the wine, bring to a vigorous boil, and cook until the wine is reduced in volume by half. Pour in the chicken stock, bring to a boil, and cook until slightly syrupy, about 4 minutes. Add the reserved lemon juice, to taste. Return the scallopine to the skillet, turning the cutlets in the sauce until they are warmed through and coated with sauce. Swirl in the parsley and divide the scallopine among warm plates. Spoon the sauce over them, including some of the capers and olives in each spoonful. Decorate the tops of the scallopine with the reserved lemon slices.

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