Monday, January 7, 2019

Ritzy Butter Cream Chicken

Boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded thin, dipped in an egg and hot sauce blend, dredged in a seasoned buttery Ritz cracker mix and pan-fried or baked, and topped with a buttery pan gravy before serving.
Boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded thin, dipped in an egg and hot sauce blend, dredged in a seasoned buttery Ritz cracker mix, pan-fried or baked, and topped with a buttery pan gravy before serving.

Ritzy Butter Cream Chicken

Here's one of those tasty things to do with boneless, skinless chicken breasts. Y'all know I'm not the biggest fan of those, but after a dip in some egg and hot sauce, a pass through a nicely seasoned blend of buttery crackers, and a quick pan fry or oven bake, these are some kinda good!

I love using regular saltines as a coating for chicken, instead of the typical flour or bread crumbs, but there's a world of texture difference between saltine crackers and those soft, delicious, buttery round crackers, most of us know as "Ritz" brand. Where saltines are crisp and jagged, Ritz crackers are tender - kind of like the difference in the texture of soft bread crumbs and dried.

Often we use crackers just roughly crushed, so that there are some mixed pieces in there, but for this recipe, you really want the crackers very finely crushed, so I use my Vitamix. Hey, I finally got around to buying one, I'm sure gonna use it! You can accomplish the same thing with a rolling pin and a little elbow grease too, of course, and that's especially great if you've got some aggresions you want to get out. You just don't want larger pieces in the crumbs - you're looking for more of a cracker meal for this recipe.

Typically this is a pan-fried recipe, or often baked in a butter filled casserole dish and topped with addition thin slices of butter, and I've written it that way, but I thought this time, I'd give it a try in my crisper tray with a spray of olive oil, using my EVO oil sprayer bottle. I really liked the result, so either way you're good to go!
This sprayer is the same gadget I use to spray food for my air fryer, but I use it a lot for everyday uses too, like spraying a tray of veggies I'm roasting, coating a skillet to saute or cook, or coating a bowl for bread rising. Each squirt is equal to about 1/4 teaspoon. I keep regular cooking oil, typically canola, in the yellow one and olive oil in the green one. I've tried a lot of sprayers and just about gave up on them until I found this one. It's the best in my opinion!

Another gadget you've seen me use a lot is this blade tenderizer. Not only can it help with flattening chicken breasts, but it pokes a bunch of cuts into whatever you use it on, so that it not only tenderizes, but infuses flavors from marinades and dredges.

Boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded thin, dipped in an egg and hot sauce blend, dredged in a seasoned buttery Ritz cracker mix and pan-fried or baked, and topped with a buttery pan gravy before serving.

By the way, did you notice the Cornflower pattern platter I shot the finished chicken on? I actually have some of the originals from my high school "hope chest" and my wedding. I never actually had one of those beautiful cedarwood chests though, back in those days. My hope chest was a shelf in the top and a space in the bottom of my bedroom closet where I put things as I bought them from my job at Rose's Department Store, all intended to be for my first apartment, not for a wedding.

I was not one of those gals that had big aspirations on getting married in high school, I just wanted to turn 18 and move out of the house! That was the way it was back in those days - we teenagers just wanted to get out of the house, get a job and get an apartment. We wanted our freedom! That sure doesn't seem to happen too much anymore. As it turns out though, not long after I turned 18, I was engaged.

Anyway... that Cornflower pattern has been around a very long time, and last year Corningware offered a 60th anniversary edition. Y'all know I had to pick up a few things, right?!

If you make this or any of my recipes, I'd love to see your results! Just snap a photo and hashtag it #DeepSouthDish on social media or tag me @deepsouthdish on Instagram!


Recipe: Ritzy Butter Cream Chicken

©From the Kitchen of Deep South Dish
Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 30 min

Total time: 40 min
Yield: 4 servings


Seasoning Blend:
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon Creole or Cajun seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
For the Chicken:
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1-1/2 sleeves Ritz brand or other buttery crackers, finely crushed
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) cold unsalted butter, divided
For the Gravy:
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 cup whole milk or half and half

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Pound chicken to an even thickness using a blade tenderizer or beat between sheets of plastic wrap with a mallet. In a pie plate, combine crushed cracker crumbs with seasoning blend. In a separate plate, beat the eggs with the hot sauce. Dip each piece of chicken in the beaten eggs, let excess drain off, and then dredge in the cracker mixture, pressing to coat breasts completely.

Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a 9 x 13 inch baking dish and arrange coated chicken in pan, topping with thin slices of remaining butter. Alternatively, place chicken on a rack over a rimmed cooking tray, spraying both sides of chicken with cooking oil (omit butter). Bake, uncovered, for 15 minutes; remove, turn and bake another 15 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through.

Meanwhile, add half stick butter to a skillet and stir in the flour. Cook for two minutes. Slowly stir in the chicken broth until fully incorporated, then add in the milk or half and half. Cook until bubbly and thickened. Taste, add salt and pepper, and spoon over chicken breasts.

Pan Fried: Heat 1/2 cup cooking oil with 1/4 cup unsalted butter in a large skillet and cook chicken in batches until browned on both sides and cooked through. Drain on a rack placed over a rimmed baking sheet and set aside or hold in a low oven. Pour off all but 1/4 cup of pan drippings and proceed with pan gravy as above, scraping up the browned bits in the skillet.

To Air Fry: Air fryers vary in wattage by brand and size. You may need to adjust times for your brand. Pound chicken breasts to even thickness. Prepare as above, except substitute cooking oil spray for the butter. I recommend the EVO brand of oil sprayers. Preheat air fryer to 380 degrees for 3 minutes. Spray basket or racks and spray both sides of breaded chicken breasts. Cook, in batches if needed, at 380 degrees F for 12 minutes longer, or until juices run clear when poked with knife tip or an instant read thermometer reads 165 degrees F, turning halfway and respraying. If chicken breasts are more than 3 to 4 ounces, you'll need to add more time. Prepare gravy as above.

Variation: Add Parmesan cheese or other shredded cheeses to the cracker mixture.

Cook's Notes: This recipe also works well with fish. Substitute your own favorite seasoning blend if you like.


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©Deep South Dish
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Check These Recipes Out Too Y’all!

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Posted by on January 7, 2019
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