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Chicken Paillard with Shaved Fennel and Orange Salad

Active Time: 25-45 minutes / Cook Time: 8-32 minutes, depending on pan size / Total Time: 45-60 minutes

Makes 4 servings

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For the chicken:

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (6 oz each)
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt, divided
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper, plus more to taste
  • 4 teaspoons ghee

For the Fennel and Orange Salad:

  • 2 bulbs fresh fennel, stalks removed and set aside
  • Zest of an orange
  • 2 oranges, supremed (see #2)
  • 1 small zucchini, peeled into wide, thin ribbons
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 4 teaspoons olive oil


  1. Place chicken breasts in a heavy-duty plastic bag. Pound gently on each side until flattened and approximately twice their original size. Use ¾ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon black pepper to season both sides of the chicken. Set aside.
  2. To supreme oranges, cut the stem and blossom side off of each, showing the fruit. Rest the orange on a cut side and using a paring knife, cut down the side of the orange, removing the skin and pith, but not too much of the flesh. Turn and repeat until all skin is removed. Over a medium bowl so you catch the juices, use the paring knife to separate each orange segment from its membrane, letting the segments fall into the bowl. Squeeze skin and membranes over the bowl to remove any more juice.
  3. Remove the core from each fennel bulb by quartering it and slicing out the tough center from each wedge. Slice quarters very thinly and add to the bowl with the oranges. Add zucchini, zest, parsley, and ¼ teaspoon salt; very gently toss to combine. Set aside.
  4. Heat a large sauté pan* over medium-high. Melt 1 teaspoon ghee. When foaming, add a paillard and cook, 3-4 minutes on each side, or until cooked through. (If two paillards will fit in a single layer, cook two at a time.) Remove from the pan and keep warm. Repeat until all the chicken is cooked, using a teaspoon of ghee per paillard.
  5. Serve, topping one paillard per person with ¼ of the fennel and orange salad. Sprinkle fennel fronds on top, and drizzle each with a teaspoon of olive oil. Package the other two servings for lunch tomorrow.

*If you would prefer to grill the chicken, preheat your grill to medium-high. Follow the rest of the recipe as directed.