It’s been years since I last ate at Cheesecake Factory. Years. I liked the wide variety of different dishes on their menu but I always end up ordering either the Chinese Chicken Salad (I was a sucker for the big mound of fried rice noodles that makes it look like Mt. Everest on a plate) or the Crispy Chicken Costoletta (the breaded deep fried cutlets drowning in a creamy lemon sauce was simply luxurious).
I don’t know why it’s taken me this long to re-create something from the Cheesecake Factory menu but the recreation round-up hosted by Stacy and Matt of Paleo Parents provided me with the perfect opportunity to do just that.
Before you dive in to the recipe, take note that using tapioca flour for frying can get a little bit tricky at times because it can end up gummy (think Elmer’s glue consistency) making it unpalatable. Here are a few tips I’m sharing with you based from my experience so you won’t end up with a gloopy plate of chicken.
1.) Use the right amount of oil.
Too little will make it stick to the pan and too much will make it extremely greasy. About an inch deep of oil is enough to cook the chicken on the first side as well as the second side when you flip it.
2.) Make sure the oil is really hot but not smoking.
Generally, heating the oil would take about 2 to 3 minutes on medium high heat. You want to be able to cook it evenly and oil that is too hot will burn the outside quickly. If its not hot enough, the tapioca flour will absorb too much oil so it will never crisp up.
3.) Do not touch or move it unnecessarily.
There are only 3 times when you should touch the chicken – when you place it on the pan, flip it to the next side and take it out once its done. Moving it around or checking it before you see it develop a golden brown crust will spread the tapioca on the pan and make a mess.
Now that i’ve shared some pointers with you, give this a try and I hope you’d enjoy it as much I as did. Not only is this a Paleo version of an old time favorite, it’s also AIP compliant!
- 2 tbsp (30 g) ghee
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- ¼ cup (60 ml) lemon juice (about 2 lemons)
- ¼ cup (60 ml) chicken broth or bone broth
- 2 tsp (16 g) tapioca flour
- ¼ cup 2 tbsp (90 ml) coconut milk
- zest of 1 lemon
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- Prepare the lemon cream sauce by melting ghee in a small saucepan over medium low heat.
- Add garlic and cook for 1 minute until fragrant.
- Add lemon juice and broth. Whisk until combined and bring to a simmer.
- Dissolve tapioca flour in coconut milk and add it to the saucepan. Whisk until it thickens.
- Turn off heat and add lemon zest and sea salt to taste. Set aside while you prepare the chicken.
- Heat a cast iron pan over medium high heat. Add coconut oil until its about ½" inch (1.27 cm) deep.
- Combine tapioca flour, garlic powder and sea salt.
- (You will be cooking the chicken in 2 batches so they crisp up evenly.) Dredge 2 chicken cutlets with the flour mixture and gently shake to remove excess.
- Place cutlets in the hot oil making sure they are at least an inch apart from each other. Fry the first side for 4 to 5 minutes. Flip and fry the other side for another 4 to 5 minutes.
- Remove from the pan and set aside on serving plate.
- Repeat for the remaining chicken cutlets.
- Drain the coconut oil from the pan and add the green beans.
- Saute for 5 minutes or until its bright green and cooked through.
- Serve with the chicken cutlets and lemon cream sauce.
Check out the other awesome recipes that are part of the Cheesecake Factory Recreation Round-up hosted by Paleo Parents!