One of my favorite things to do with my Food Friday posts is to feature fun and different ingredients. My friend, Sarah, introduced me to these awesome Rosemary Marcona Almonds on our trip to Phoenix. What a great find from Trader Joe’s! Marcona almonds are a product from Spain. They are really soft and have a texture similar to macadamia nuts with a slightly sweeter flavor than regular almonds.
I love combining rosemary with lemon and any kind of cheese. This week I have for you a new self proclaimed favorite, Rosemary Almond Crusted Chicken.I put my almonds, lemon zest, lemon pepper, bread crumbs and parmesan cheese in a food processor and pulsed until coarsely chopped. I combined milk and egg whites to dip the chicken into. This egg wash helps the almond mixture stick to the chicken. Next, I heated up a little bit of my favorite Meyer Lemon Olive Oil with a sprig of rosemary in it for added flavor and cooked it on medium heat until the rosemary was fragrant and flavored the oil, about 2 minutes. I cooked the chicken in the oil for 2-3 minutes per side and then finished it off in a 375 degree oven for 20-25 minutes or until the internal chicken temperature is 165 degrees. In the oven, the chicken is best cooked on parchment paper so it doesn’t stick and cause you to lose the yummy almond crusting.I love that while the chicken is cooking you can prepare anything else that would go with your dish. This chicken dish was delicious! I’ve made it several times since this first experimental go around and love it more and more each time!A few other ways you can utilize the marcona almonds:
- eat them plain. They are delicious!
- as part of a green salad
- coarsely chopped on top of green beans, asparagus or shelled edamame
- part of a cheese plate
- substitute for pine nuts in pesto
Almond Crusted Chicken
1/2 c. rosemary marcona almonds
1 t. lemon zest
1/2 t. lemon pepper
1/8 c. bread crumbs
2 T. parmesan cheese
1 egg white
2 t. milk
4 small to medium chicken breast (pound the chicken with a meat mallet or rolling pin to make the chicken even thickness to allow for even cooking)
2-3 T. olive oil (my favorite is meyer lemon)
2 sprigs fresh rosemary
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Combine almonds, lemon zest, lemon pepper, bread crumbs and parmesan cheese in food processor. Pulse until coarsely chopped and combined. Beat egg white and milk in bowl. Pour almond mixture into similar size and shape bowl. Dip the chicken in the egg mixture and then firmly press into almond mixture. Heat olive oil over medium heat and add rosemary sprig while heating up the oil. Allow to heat for a couple of minutes. Add chicken and cook for 2-3 minutes per side. Cover cookie sheet with parchment or wax paper. Place chicken on cookie sheet and cook in oven for 20-25 minutes or until internal temperature is 165 degrees.