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Coconut Crusted Chicken with Mango Risotto




2 lbs Chicken Breast, Fresh

1 Cup Panko Bread Crumbs

1 Cup Shredded Coconut, unsweetened

1 Mango

Coconut Milk

2 tbsp Cornstarch

½ tsp Ginger

2 Tbsp Canola Oil

6 cups chicken broth, low sodium

3 tablespoons olive oil, divided

2 tablespoons butter

Salt and pepper

2 cups Arborio rice

1/2 cup dry white wine

1/2 cup fresh Parmesan Reggiano cheese, grated


If you were smart and bought 4 even sized chicken breasts, unlike me, then skip the first step of fileting the chicken breasts. This would have been the easier step, but I sometimes tend to think in restaurant terms instead of eat at home terms. If you are filleting the chicken be sure to trim any fat from the edges of the breast. Then place your hand flat on the top side of the breast, place the knife in the middle of the thickest part of the breast, and with small movements begin to slide in to the breast. When in doubt look at the picture! That’s why I LOVE picture books.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix the cornstarch and ginger together. Once the chicken is cut (or just ready out of the packaging) take each breast  and lightly dust all sides of the chicken with cornstarch mix. Place 3/4th can of coconut milk in a 9x9 pan so you can coat the chicken. When you open the can it may look solid, just whisk it up. Sometimes coconut milk solidifies from the water. Place chicken in pan with coconut milk until it is coated. On a plate mix the shredded coconut and panko together.

I literally had to yell at my girlfriend to stop eating the coconut off the plate. It’s allowed, and recommended to do tasting, but she was eating my main ingredient! Press the coconut milk soaked chicken onto the panko mix until all sides are coated.  While your coating chicken, heat up the canola oil in a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Once heated, place each breast in oil for 2 minutes each side or until browned.  

ace chicken in a nonstick 9x13 baking pan and cover with tin foil. Place in oven for 15 minutes or until done. If the chicken is done before the risotto, turn the oven down to “Warm” or the lowest temperature setting. Cover the pan with saran wrap then tin foil and leave in the oven until ready.


Now let me start off by saying there is very few times I am speechless when it comes to cooking. My kitchen at work is always asking me questions. Lane, what does Moray mean? What kind of vinegar is in this jar of pickled peppadews? What’s the correct way to make soffritto? You get the jest. 99% of the time I can come up with some type of answers, even if it takes me faking it until I look it up. When I asked my girlfriend what she wanted with her chicken, and risotto left her lips, I drew a completely blank. Once she asked if I knew how to make it, I am pretty sure I not only stuttered I think some random words like um, uh, eh, maybe, and duh escaped my mouth. I then went to my trusty Le Bonne Cuisine (which is unusual because risotto is Italian), and found their recipe for risotto. After I realized it would not pair with panko and coconut crusted chicken, I decided to put my own twist on the recipe. This is what I came up with.

Heat the chicken broth in a medium saucepan and keep warm over low heat. In an extra large skillet place 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Heat for about 3 minutes. While the oil is heating cut your mango long ways all the way around, grip and twist. This will separate the seed and make it easier to cut. Cut strips on the inside of the mango and turn the skin inside out. This is the easier and best way to cut a mango.

Add the rice to the pan and stir quickly until it is well-coated and opaque, 1 minute. Make sure you don’t skip this step (I almost made this mistake; good thing the box of Arborio knew I was a cooking novice)! This cooks off the starchy coating and prevents it from sticking to itself.

Stir in wine and remaining coconut milk and cook until the liquid is mostly evaporated. With an 8oz ladle (if you don’t have an 8oz ladle just add up to 1 cup or 8 oz) of the warm broth and cook. Keep stirring constantly until the rice has absorbed the liquid. Add the rest of the broth one ladle at a time. Keep stirring as you add the broth. Make sure the rice has soaked up most of the liquid before adding more. Now I heard from one of Anthony Bourdain’s episodes that if you toss the risotto in the air it makes the risotto fluffier. I cannot say if this truly works, but you can be assured it will impress the other person, and definitely make a small mess. After you add the last cup of chicken stock, add the chopped up mango and brown sugar. Continue to stir until all of the liquid is soaked up. The risotto should be very creamy and fluffy, but not mushy like over cooked rice you get out of a bag. Stir in Parmesan cheese, cook briefly until melted. After the risotto is done, serve on a plate with two breasts of chicken crossed on top. Now your chicken will have a darker color and crispier texture than the one in the picture because sometimes it takes 3 tries to make something picture worthy. I took the picture the first try.

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