2boneless skinless chicken breastssliced in half horizontally and pounded to 3/4 inches thick
¼teaspoonground black pepper
½cupbutterplus 2 tablespoons¾, divided
¼cupfresh lemon juice
1sprigfresh sage leaves
Add the beaten egg to a shallow bowl. Add the flour to another shallow dish. Set aside
Place a piece of wax paper or parchment paper on top of the breasts and use a rolling pin or meat mallet to pound each one to an even thickness of about 3/4 inch.
Season both sides of the breasts and then, one at a time, dip each piece into the egg mixture, then the flour mixture. Be sure to let any excess egg drip back into the bowl before flouring, and then shake off any excess flour too. Repeat with the rest of the breasts.
Melt 1/2 cup of butter in a large skillet over medium heat and add the olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the sprig of sage and let it cook for two to three minutes. Remove the sage from the skillet, place it on a paper towel, and save for garnish.
Add the breasts to the skillet and let them cook for about three minutes or until they are a light golden brown. Turn the chicken over and let it cook for three more minutes. While it is cooking, baste it several times with the butter mixture.
Leave the chicken in the skillet and add the additional two tablespoons of butter. When the butter has melted, remove the skillet from the heat and add the lemon juice. Swirl the pan around to mix the lemon juice and butter and spoon over the breasts.
Serve immediately with a spoonful of the lemon butter and garnish with lemon slices and bits of the cooked sage.
An alternative way to pound the chicken breasts is to place them inside a Ziploc bag and then use a rolling pin to pound them.If you don't have a rolling pin or meat mallet, you could place a sturdy paper towel over the wax paper or parchment paper covering the breasts and hit them lightly with a hammer. If you choose this method, be careful, and don't tear the chicken.Don't be tempted to skip the step of pounding the breasts. It makes them more tender, and because they are an even thickness, they will cook more uniformly.If you don't have fresh sage, just leave it out. I have made this recipe with and without, and it is delicious either way. The sage adds another layer of flavor.This recipe calls for breasts that are 3/4 inches thick. If your breasts are thicker or thinner, it will take more or less time than the three minutes per side called for to cook them.