Chicken with crust of parsley, pine nuts and Parmesan

Mario Matassa’s recipe for this petto di pollo con impanati al prezzemolo, pinoli e parmigiano is a perfect light main course or picnic addition

Chicken breast with a crust of parsley, pine nuts and Parmesan for picnic

Preparation time 10 minutes
Cooking time 6-8 minutes


• 2 large chicken breasts

• 1 small free-range egg

• 6-8 tbsp fine breadcrumbs

• 1 heaped tsp dried flat-leaf parsley

• 2 heaped tbsp grated Parmesan

• 50g pine nuts, chopped

• olive oil, for frying

• salt and freshly ground black pepper


1 Slice the chicken breasts in half horizontally. Do this by placing the chicken on a chopping board, then running a very sharp knife horizontally through the meat.

2 Next, beat the egg in a bowl and add the chicken. Make sure you coat it well. 

3 In a separate bowl, combine the breadcrumbs, parsley, Parmesan and pine nuts. Remove a chicken breast from the beaten egg and place it into the breadcrumb mixture. Coat each side of the meat well, pressing it down gently to make sure the crumbs stick firmly. Coat the rest of the chicken in the same way.  

4 Heat a little olive oil in a large frying pan and, when it is hot, add the chicken breasts. Cook over a medium heat for 3-4 minutes on each side, ensuring that the meat is cooked all the way through. If it looks dry when you turn the chicken, add a little extra oil. 

5 Once cooked, drain the chicken on kitchen paper and allow it to cool before packing up for the picnic. Of course these can also be enjoyed hot if you are eating at home.

TIP The oil does need to be hot, and it needs to be kept hot, so it is important that you don’t overcrowd the pan. As these are being left to cool completely you can be patient and cook the pieces one at a time.


Find more Italian-inspired recipes here