Chicken Milanese with Tomato Arugula Salad

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Chicken Milanese with Tomato Arugula Salad

½ pound arugula leaves, washed, dried and roughly chopped
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
¼-½ red onion, thinly sliced, about ½ cup
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice, or red wine vinegar
a big pinch fine sea salt
12 or more grinds freshly ground black pepper
1 pound chicken cutlets, cut into 4 pieces, pounded 1/4-inch thick
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper for sprinkling
½ cup all-purpose flour
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups panko bread crumbs
1/3 cup grated Parmesan
¼ cup olive oil, or more as needed
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, or more as needed
extra Parmesan and lemon wedges for serving

Make the salad:
        If you like, you can place the onions in a small bowl of cold water for a few minutes first to remove some of the bite. In a medium size bowl, toss the arugula, tomatoes and red onion with the olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Taste for seasoning and set aside.

Make the chicken:
        Heat the oven to 250 degrees F and place a cooling rack on top of a rimmed baking sheet. Set aside.
        Lightly season chicken cutlets all over with salt and pepper.
        Set up a breading station: Place the flour in a shallow bowl or plate. Crack eggs into another shallow dish and beat well; combine the panko and Parmesan in a third dish.
        Dip a chicken cutlet in flour, shake off excess, then dip in the eggs completely coating, shake off the excess, and finally dip both sides in the panko mixture, completely coating and pressing the crumbs into the chicken. Place on a plate and repeat with the remaining cutlets.
        In a large skillet, preferably non-stick, melt the butter and the oil over medium heat. When the oil is hot—you’ll see it start to shimmer and the butter will foam-- fry 2 cutlets at a time until the bottoms are golden, about 3 minutes. Flip them and fry until golden and crispy on the other side, about another 3 minutes. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate, and sprinkle immediately with salt. Place on the cooling rack and keep warm in the oven.
        When ready to serve, give each cutlet a light squeeze of lemon, and top with the salad.

Makes 4 servings.      YUM!

LESSONS Learned:
1. In advance, set up a breading station with 3 large dishes, pans or bowls to hold the flour, egg and panko.
2. Use one hand to bread the chicken and keep the other hand clean to keep things less messy.
3. Panko will add extra crispiness, but you can you use regular bread crumbs too.
4. You can bread the cutlets up to 4 hours in advance. Just keep them in the fridge until ready to fry.
5. If you are making a bunch of these, place a cooling rack over a rimmed sheet pan, and place the cooked ones on the rack in a 250 degree F ovento keep them warm.