So while we both enjoyed this dish -- The Husband thought the chicken was cooked "perfectly" and the "nut topping" was really nice (when I explained it was pretzels, not nuts, he merely shrugged and said that explained why they weren't as crunchy as he'd expected!) -- I think it could be better. Longer marinade time for the chicken, for one, and more finely crushed pretzels, for another. Also, maybe some garlic in the marinade and dressing? Mmm. Garlic.
If you have a food processor, feel free to pulverize your pretzels with it. I was all hepped up with Monday Grrr and was more than happy to bash away at the pretzels with my meat tenderizer. Seriously, it's good therapy!
Also, if you prefer a bit of sweetness, you could just use your favorite honey mustard vinaigrette rather than making the marinade and dressing.
Pretzel-Crusted Chicken With Salad GarnishYield: 3
- 3 similarly-sized boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 3 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 Tbsp white wine vinegar
- 2 Tbsp + ½ tsp coarse grain Dijon mustard [Grey Poupon Country Dijon]
- 6 oz grape tomatoes, halved
- 6 oz salted pretzels [Snyder Of Hanover Olde Tyme Pretzels]
- Baby arugula, as needed
- Salt and pepper, as desired
- Preheat oven to 425°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and set aside.
- Place chicken breasts between two sheets of wax or parchment paper on a sturdy, flat surface. Firmly pound the chicken with a rolling pin or the smooth side of a meat mallet until they’re all flattish and of similar thickness.
- In a large dish, whisk together 2 tablespoons grainy mustard, 1 tablespoon olive oil, and 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar. Add chicken to the dish. Toss to coat well and let marinate for 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, whisk together the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil, 1 tablespoon of white wine vinegar, and ½ teaspoon mustard in a bowl. Add the tomatoes and toss to coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside until needed.
- Place pretzels in a food processor and whiz around until pulverized (you'll want to leave some small-ish chunks for both aesthetics and crunch). Or put pretzels in a food storage bag and bash with your meat tenderizer until they form crumbs of the desired size. Pour pretzel crumbs into a pie plate or shallow bowl.
- Remove chicken from marinade. Press chicken into pretzel crumbs, coating both sides.
- Arrange crumb-coated chicken on the prepared baking sheet. Mist the tops of the chicken breasts with nonstick spray. Bake for 15 minutes or until pretzels are nicely browned and chicken is 165 °F.
- Divide the chicken among three plates. Artistically arrange the arugula on top. Spoon the tomatoes over the arugula and serve immediately.