Seared Chicken With Salami and Olives

Seared Chicken With Salami and Olives

Salami and olives, stars of the charcuterie board, make this any-night chicken dinner something special. Ingredients cured in salt like bacon, salami, olives, capers and anchovies are powerhouses of umami and flavor, two things cooks aim to develop. Salami is also packed with fatty richness, so when crisped, its seasoned fat turns plain old water into a brawny pan sauce. If you find your olive-salami sauce is too salty, balance the salinity with sweetness in the form of honey or brown sugar. (For a similar longer-cooking dish, check out Donald Link’s braise.)
  • Total:
  • Serves: 4 persons



  1. Step 1

    If you’re using chicken breasts, pound to an even 1/2-inch thickness with a heavy skillet or meat pounder. In a large (12-inch) skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high. Season the chicken lightly with salt and pepper. Working in batches if necessary to avoid crowding the pan, add the chicken to the skillet and cook until browned underneath, about 5 minutes. Flip and cook until cooked through, 2 to 5 minutes. (Breasts will be done before thighs.)
  2. Step 2

    While the chicken’s cooking, place 1 cup of water near the stove. (You’ll need it in the next step.) Transfer the cooked chicken to a plate, leaving the skillet over the heat.
  3. Step 3

    Reduce the heat to medium. Add the salami and a few generous grinds of pepper. Cook, stirring, until browned and crisp, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the shallot and cook until softened, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the water, increase heat to a simmer and cook, scraping up browned bits, until reduced by half, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the olives, chicken and any juices from the plate. Simmer until the chicken is warmed through, 1 to 2 minutes.
  4. Step 4

    Transfer the chicken to serving plates. Remove the skillet from the heat and stir in the butter until incorporated. Taste the sauce; if it’s too salty, add honey or brown sugar to taste. Spoon the sauce over the chicken.