ENTREE: Chicken Saltimbocca with Beurre Blanc

recipe photo

Joey Altman has shared three great recipes from his book Without Reservations. Each one is delicious, simple – and ideal for preparing with friends. Watch our videos with Joey Altman that demonstrate how to on prepare this Italian-themed dinner, including simple tips on how to involve your guests in the prep.

Like many recipes in Without Reservations, this dish is an adaptation of the classic veal saltimbocca. Watch our video of Joey Altman preparing this dish.


  • 6 skinless, boneless half chicken breasts (about 10 ounces each)
  • 6 thin slices of fontina cheese (about 4 ounces)
  • 6 paper-thin slices prosciutto (about 6 ounces)
  • 12 fresh sage leaves, plus extra for optional garnish
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 large eggs beaten lightly with 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1½ cups panko or other bread crumbs
  • ¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, plus extra for the optional sage leaves, if using
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter chopped flat-leaf parsley, for garnish


  • Pound each piece of chicken with a mallet to make a ¼- to ½-inch-thick rectangle. On one half of each piece, lay a slice of fontina, a slice of proscuitto, and 2 sage leaves. Fold the chicken in half to enclose the filling, pressing down to seal.
  • Put the flour, beaten eggs, and bread crumbs into three separate pie pans or broad shallow bowls and line them up in that order, left to right. Stir the Parmesan into the bread crumbs. Lightly season the flour with salt and pepper. Set a plate to the right of the pans to receive the breaded chicken.
  • Dredge each stuffed chicken breast in the flour, being careful not to lose the filling. Pat to shake off excess flour. Keeping one hand dry, use the other to dip each breast into the egg wash, then place the breast on top of the bread crumbs. Use your dry hand to press bread crumbs onto both sides of the chicken. Place the breaded breast on the plate and repeat with the remaining chicken.
  • Let the breaded chicken rest for about 10 minutes or refrigerate, covered, for up to 2 hours. The three-step coating technique, along with the short rest, are the keys to a crust that stays on the chicken when you cook it.
  • Preheat the oven to 375_F. Combine the olive oil and butter, divide the mixture between two large heavy skillets and place over medium-high heat. (Alternatively, you can do this in two batches.) Add half of the chicken to each pan without crowding. Cook until the coating begins to brown, 2 to 3 minutes on the other side.
  • Transfer the chicken to a rimmed baking sheet or pan and bake until the chicken is cooked through and the bread crumbs are golden and crispy, about 10 minutes.
  • If garnishing with the sage leaves, while the chicken is in the oven, heat the extra olive oil in a heavy skillet over medium-high heat until almost smoking. Gently slide in the leaves and press down to submerge them. Fry until they begin to crisp, just a few seconds. Carefully lift them out with tongs or a slotted spoon and drain on a plate lined with paper towels. They will crisp further as they cool.
  • To serve, mound Parmesan polenta (from Joey Altman's Without Reservations) on each of six Great White Dinner Plates. Slice the chicken in half on a diagonal and place the two halves in opposite directions over the polenta. Spoon the beurre blanc over the chicken, drizzling a little onto the plates. Garnish with fried sage or chopped parsley, as desired.