Citizens, few things awaken a mighty hunger within TFD as much as this simple, classic Italian recipe!
Piccata is an Italian word, the feminine form of the word piccato, meaning “larded”. It is also spelled picatta or pichotta.
It is a translation of the French piqué (sharp, as in “piquant”), participle of piquer. When used in reference to a way of preparing food, particularly meat or fish, it means “sliced, sautéed, and served in a sauce containing lemon, butter and spices”.
Several authorities believe the name veal piccata, like chicken Parmesan and pasta primavera, was coined by Italian Americans in the United States in the 1930s. The recipe may actually date back to the Italian Renaissance as a meal for nobility, but no one is 100% sure on this point.
Traditionally, the Italians use veal (veal piccata), however the best known dish of this sort in the U.S. Is based on chicken breast (chicken piccata).
In the United States, it is usually served with a starch, such as pasta, polenta, or rice. In Italy, veal piccata is a secondo and would be served after the pasta (or other starch) course.
My version of this classic recipe uses Marsala wine, instead of the more classic white wine. I also use a touch of garlic and a bit of demiglace to add further color and richness to the sauce.
A delicious and simple dinner treat, Citizens!
Battle on – The Generalissimo
¼ cup all-purpose flour
4 thin slices veal (scalloppini), each about ⅛ inch thick – if you have an issue with veal, try chicken breast or pork filleta
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 tablespoons butter
1 minced shallot
½ cup marsala wine
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons rinsed and drained capers
1 clove garlic, finely minced
1 teaspoon or to taste veal (preferred) or chicken demiglace (optional but recommended)
2 teaspoons fresh Italian parsley leaves, minced
salt & pepper
Grated parmesan, for garnish
Place each piece of veal between sheets of plastic wrap and pound lightly with a meat tenderizer or mallet until very thin.
Lightly season with salt & pepper. Coat the veal with the flour and pat off any excess.
In a large sauté pan, heat the oil and 1 tablespoon of the butter over medium-high heat and sauté the veal for 1 minute, or until pale golden brown.
Turn the veal and sauté it for 30 seconds more. Transfer the veal to a platter and keep it warm, covered.
Add the shallots and garlic to the same pan and sauté for 45 seconds. Add the Marsala and simmer until slightly reduced.
Add the lemon juice and the capers and simmer the mixture for 1 minute more. Taste for seasoning and add salt & pepper if needed.
Turn the heat off and swirl in the butter, demiglace and the parsley. Return the meat and any juices that may have accumulated to the sauce to reheat. Serve right away garnished with grated Parmesan.
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