When I get smitten with a dish, I immediately develop a curiosity as to how versatile it can be. For instance, if I substitute fish for a traditional chicken dish, will the result be comparatively good or, perhaps, even better?
From experience, I know that the correct answer is, of course, not always. But in the case of chicken piccata, yes, fish can take the place of the chicken with superlative results. Breaded salmon fillet is fried until golden and crisp then briefly braised in lemon-butter sauce in this seafood version of an Italian chicken dish.
- 1 salmon fillet about 500 grams total weight
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan
- 1 egg
- 1 cup panko you may use unsweetened regular bread crumbs
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 6 tablespoons butter
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- ¼ cup mirin (Japanese rice wine)
- 2 tablespoons capers in brine drained
- 4 cloves garlic minced or chopped
- lemon slices to garnish (optional)
- Dry the salmon fillet with paper towels.
- Cut the salmon fillet into four portions (more surface means more crispness and more areas that can soak up sauce later).
- Place the flour in a shallow bowl and stir in the Parmesan.
- Crack the egg into another shallow bowl and whisk.
- Pour the panko into a third shallow bowl.
- Dredge each piece of salmon in the flour-Parmesan mixture; shake off excess.
- Dip the floured salmon fillets in beaten egg.
- Coat the salmon with panko.
- In a frying pan, heat the olive oil with four tablespoons of butter.
- Brown the breaded salmon on all sides then scoop out and move to a plate.
- Pour the lemon juice and mirin into the pan. Stir and scrape the browned bits on the bottom of the pan to make sure they get mixed into the sauce. Allow to boil gently for a minute.
- Add the capers and garlic.
- In a single layer, arrange the salmon in the bubbling sauce in the pan.
- Simmer over medium heat for about five minutes or until most of the sauce has been soaked up by the fish (see notes after the recipe).
- Ladle rice on four plates and top with a piece of salmon.
- To the remaining sauce in the pan, add the last two tablespoons of butter and whisk thoroughly.
- Pour the sauce with the capers over the salmon on all four plates.
- Serve your salmon piccata immediately.