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Maple-Bacon Crusted Chicken with Peaches, Feta & Bacon over Romaine with Maple-Dijon Vinaigrette

Updated: Oct 20, 2019

Maple-bacon sesame sticks are the secret to this crispy baked chicken masterpiece.

Maple-Bacon Crusted Chicken

This recipe came to me in a flash. I was munching on BD Provisions's newest offering, Maple-Bacon Sesame Sticks, right in the store when it dawned on me that this would make THE greatest breadcrumb of all time! And, oh, it did: crispy and salty with those identifiable flavors of smokey bacon and sweet maple. The sesame sticks, like a potato chip, are fried, which means that you do not have to add even a drop of oil to the bread crumb before baking the chicken in the oven.

Equipment: cutting board; chef’s knife; food processor; rubber spatula; wet and dry measuring cups; measuring spoons; mixing bowls; fork; (3) wide shallow bowls; rimmed sheet pan; tongs; platter; whisk

Chicken Ingredients:

4, 6-oz split chicken breasts ½ cup flour 1 teaspoon salt ½ teaspoon pepper 2 eggs, lightly beaten

1 tablespoon maple syrup 2 cups maple-bacon sesame sticks, finely ground

Salad Ingredients:

1 head Romaine lettuce, chopped 2 peaches, cut into eighths

½ cup crumbled feta 8 slices cooked bacon, chopped into ½-inch pieces ½ cup white wine vinegar 1½ cups vegetable oil 1 tablespoon maple syrup 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1. Preheat the oven to 425°F.

2. Combine the flour, salt, and pepper in a wide, shallow bowl and set aside. Then beat the eggs and maple syrup with a fork in a wide, shallow bowl and set aside. Put the maple-bacon sesame stick crumbs in a wide, shallow bowl and set aside. From left to right, line up the seasoned flour, egg mixture, and breadcrumbs, respectively.

Breading is very procedural. It can be a messy proposition if you don’t follow the ILOC way: wet hand, dry hand!

3. Dredge one chicken breast in the seasoned flour and shake off excess. Then dip the coated chicken into the egg mixture, then directly into the breadcrumbs. With a dry hand, toss well to coat and place on the sheet pan. Repeat with the remaining chicken breasts.

Breading Is As Easy As 1-2-3

You need three bowls: one shallow bowl with flour and seasonings, a second shallow bowl with eggs and other wet ingredients, and a third shallow bowl with breadcrumbs. Moving from left to right is key, and so is keeping one hand dry and one hand wet. That is, flour the food with your left hand (dry), but dip it in egg with your right hand (wet). Move the food from the egg, shaking off excess, to the breadrcumbs using your wet, right hand. Dredge the food in the breadcrumbs with your dry, left hand and move it to a pan or plate. Never put your dry hand in the eggs, or your wet hand in the flour or breadcrumbs.

4. Bake uncovered for 10 minutes. Remove the sheet pan from the oven, turn the chicken breasts over and return the pan to the oven for 5-7 minutes more.

5. Meanwhile, make the vinaigrette. Pour the vinegar into a large bowl and add the maple syrup and mustard. Blend with a whisk, then add then add the oil very slowly to the vinegar mixture, a bit at a time, as you whisk vigorously, to emulsify. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

6. Remove the chicken breasts from the oven and set aside. Garnish a large platter or four individual plates with the romaine and drizzle with some vinaigrette. Slice each chicken breast into 5-8 slices and place on the dressed lettuce. Add the peach slices, feta, and bacon. Drizzle with additional vinaigrette and serve immediately.

Makes 4 servings.

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