Here is dinner combination that I used to make often when my girls were in high school and living at home. It was great for those nights before a big tennis match. The original recipe is from Creme de Colorado, still one of my all-time favorite cookbooks. I've lightened up the calories in the recipes but the great flavors still shine through.
The original recipe calls for turkey tenderloins but I have always used chicken. It's called Smacked Flat because the chicken (or turkey) is pounded thin and then coated with seasoned bread crumbs, herbs and grated Parmesan cheese. The thin medallions only take a few minutes to saute and then a little butter and the juice of a lemon are added to the pan to make a sauce to pour over the sauteed chicken.
The real star of the plate is the Linguine in Broccoli Cream Sauce. This would be a delicious side to any variety of meats and seafood or could stand on it's own with some toasted pine nuts and a side salad. Even those who don't like plain broccoli will love this! (You can hide the broccoli garnish and they won't even know.)
Smacked Flat Chicken with Linguine in Broccoli Cream SauceAdapted from Creme de Colorado
Smacked Flat Chicken
4 turkey tenderloins or 4 boneless chicken breasts
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 cup Italian bread crumbs
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 cup butter (I either omit or use just 1 tablespoon)
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons butter (I use only 1)
Juice of 1 lemon
Pound turkey or chicken lightly between 2 sheets of waxed paper or parchment paper to about 1/4-inch thickness. (I usually cut each breast into 2 pieces, and then pound them. ) In a plastic bag or a bowl combine the garlic powder, bread crumbs, Parmesan, pepper and paprika. Shake or dust each piece of meat until well coated and place on a waxed paper-lined plate, using waxed paper in between layers of meat, if necessary. Can be made ahead and refrigerated up to this point.
In a large skillet, heat the olive oil and butter, if using, until hot. Saute tenderloins, a few at a time for 2-3 minutes on each side. Do not overcook. Drain on paper toweling and keep on a warm platter.
Add a small amount of butter to the skillet over high heat. When it bubbles, add the juice of one lemon and stir rapidly. Continue to cook over high heat, stirring constantly while scraping up any brown bits from the bottom of the skillet as the mixture thickens slightly. Pour this over the tenderloins and serve.
Adapted from Creme de Colorado
Linguine in Broccoli Cream Sauce
Serves 8 as a side dish
1-1/2 pounds of fresh broccoli
Reserve 1/4 cup of broccoli-cooking liquid
1/4 cup butter (I use 1/8 cup)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg (freshly grated, if you have it)
1 large clove of garlic, cut into slices
1 cup heavy cream (I use fat-free half & half)
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 pound linguine, cooked al dente and drained
Trim off and discard the ends of the broccoli stems. Cut off flowerets and peel and slice stems. Heat a large saucepan of salted water to boiling. Add broccoli and cook for about 8 minutes. Drain, reserving 1/4 cup of cooking liquid. Rinse broccoli until cold water to stop the cooking. Set aside liquid and 3/4 cup of the cooked flowerets for garnish.
In a food processor with the steel blade, combine remaining broccoli, reserved cooking liquid, butter, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Turn on processor and drop garlic through the feed tube. Process until smooth. Can be made ahead up to this point. Cover and let stand at room temperature for up to 2 hours.
In a saucepan, heat the cream (or fat free half & half) over medium heat and stir in broccoli sauce. Add 1/4 cup Parmesan and heat to simmering. In a heated serving dish, toss the warm pasta with the remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan. Garnish with reserved flowerets and serve immediately.