10-Minute Pan-Fried Chicken Breast

2 chicken breasts (boneless, skinless)
2 tablespoons olive oil (one for rubbing and one for cooking)
1 teaspoon salt
1⁄2 teaspoon black pepper
2 cloves garlic (pressed)
1 teaspoon parsley
1⁄2 teaspoon thyme
1⁄4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (more to taste)

Using a sharp knife, cut the chicken breasts in half lengthwise. You want to end up with 4, equally thin, chicken cutlets. Uniformly thick chicken breast will cook faster and more uniformly. Rub the chicken breasts with one tablespoon oil, then season with salt, pepper, thyme, garlic, parsley and cayenne pepper.Tip: the seasoning mix here is fairly basic but gives the chicken good flavor. I vary it depending on what I have, or want to use, and often add fresh herbs. I find basil, oregano and coriander to be great in this recipe. Spice mixes like Italian, herbs de provence are also fabulous. If you like sesame oil, use it instead of olive oil for rubbing, but reduce the amount to about teaspoon, or to taste. Heat one tablespoon of oil in a non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken breasts and partially cover the pan with a lid, leaving about a 1/2" - 1" crack. Tip: if using a regular skillet, double the amount of oil. You can also use 50/50 oil and butter for better flavor. Cook for 3 minutes undisturbed. At this time you will notice that the tops of the breasts have turned white. Flip the breasts, partially cover and cook for another 3 minutes. Remove from the pan and serve immediately or keep warm until ready to eat.