Deliciously Tangy: Elevate Your Dishes with Homemade Piccata Sauce!
While the history of piccata is unclear, the distinctive flavors the dish has to offer are not. Despite the belief that this dish originates from Italy, it originated in the United States around the turn of the 20th century.
Regardless of how it got here, we are grateful to have this simple go-to homemade Picatta sauce in our kitchen arsenal.
Piccata is a term that technically means thin slices, generally of meat, but it is most often associated with the buttery lemon sauce that is served on top of our favorite meats.
It's not only tasty but also really simple to prepare! Acid, salt, and butter are the ideal complement to each other. Fresh lemon juice is often used as the acid, while capers provide the salty crunch. A little wine or broth is added to balance things out.
With only one pan to clean up, all of these flavors combine to create a sauce that goes wonderfully with any kind of meat.
Customizing this Picatta sauce is a rather flexible process. Anything from veal to spaghetti may be topped with your favorite nuts or herbs. Most often, meats are pan-fried with a little flour coating and then finished with piccata sauce.
What Does Piccata Mean?
There is chicken piccata and veal piccata (what the Italians use more of), and you can even get additional variations of piccata, including swordfish.
But what precisely is piccata? According to Merriam-Webster, piccata is the feminine form of piccata, the past tense of the verb piccare to lard (meat), which is likely derived from the French verb piquer, which means to prick.
The "pricking" of the meat might very well relate to the technique of repeatedly pricking a cutlet with a tenderizing instrument (like a Jaccard knife) to make it more tender.
And considering how recently the phrase has been used—its earliest use in this meaning dates only from 1949—that makes sense.
Thigh vs. Breast For Piccata
Overcooking chicken breasts is a common problem. This is a common occurrence. Because there is little to no connective tissue in breast meat to provide a "backup" to the moisture loss that might occur while cooking, the muscle fibers in this cut of meat denature at lower temperatures.
This dish's propensity to dry out is a catastrophe waiting to happen because of the frying and braising it requires.
However, the connective tissue of dark flesh chicken easily breaks down when the bird cooks, releasing moisture even as the muscle fibers squeeze out their own water. Butterflied chicken breasts won't compare in flavor to thinly pounded chicken thighs. Thighs should be used.
Homemade Piccata Sauce Recipe
- 1/2 cup chicken broth
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 cup dry white wine
- 2 tablespoons capers, drained
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- Salt and pepper to taste
- In a small saucepan, combine the chicken broth, lemon juice, and white wine. Bring to a simmer over medium heat.
- Stir in the capers and let the mixture simmer for about 5 minutes or until it reduces by half.
- Reduce the heat to low, and whisk in the butter until it melts and the sauce thickens slightly.
- Stir in the chopped fresh parsley and season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve the Piccata sauce over your favorite chicken, fish, or pasta dishes.
- Enjoy the tangy and flavorful Piccata sauce with your meals!
In conclusion, at Burrata House, we understand the importance of a delectable sauce to elevate your dining experience. Our Piccata Sauce, crafted with care and precision, embodies the authentic flavors of Italy that you seek.
As one of the best Italian restaurants in Los Angeles, we take pride in offering the finest Italian food in the heart of LA. Whether you're a local looking for a culinary journey or a visitor in search of the best Italian food in Los Angeles, Burrata House welcomes you to savor the essence of Italy right here in LA.
Join us for an unforgettable dining experience that celebrates the rich tradition of Italian cuisine.