To make the pickle, remove peel and all pith from the lemons using a small, serrated knife. Cut in between the membrane and let lemon fillets fall onto a chopping board. Chop fi llets. Squeeze juice from membrane into a bowl.
Put shallots and garlic in a small saucepan with the oil and 1 Tbsp water. Cover and cook gently without browning for about 7 minutes until very tender. Add cardamom and coriander seeds, a little black pepper, salt, lemon fillets, sugar and lemon juice.
Keeping pan on a gentle heat, stir until sugar has dissolved and everything is starting to bubble gently. Cook very gently for about 10 minutes or until mixture is like a thick purée; you’ll need to stir it during the last 3-4 minutes of cooking. Cool.
Cut pockets in chicken breasts, open them up, sprinkle with a little salt and spread lemon pickle inside. Press gently to close. Dust breasts with flour then dunk in egg-and-milk mixture; let excess drip off and coat in crumbs.
Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. When hot, add butter. Let it melt and start to sizzle then add chicken. Brown well, maintaining a nice sizzle but without letting the butter burn, then turn and cook the other side. When breasts are nearly cooked through (they’ll take about 15 minutes and will be juicy and blushed with the faintest pink inside), transfer to a warmed platter. (The chicken continues to cook in residual heat.) Serve immediately.
- Great with a tray of roasted kumara and broccoli, broccofl ower or baby carrots.
- Scoop off excess fat from pan after frying then deglaze pan with verjuice. Spoon dollops of creamy potato mash onto hot plates, pour on a little pan jus and top with chicken breasts.
- Leftovers can be gently reheated in a microwave.
Article from the July, 2012 issue of Taste magazine.