Mealtime at home was always a big deal. My mother put a lot of time and love into preparing the dinner that would feed the hungry Italian army that descended on her each evening. And when the inevitable uninvited guests showed up, they were always welcome because it was only a matter of setting a few extra places.

Of course, when I moved away from home and joined life in the fast-paced single lane of Washington, I discovered, to my dismay, that I hardly had enough time to fix a meal for myself let alone entertain dinner guests, expected or otherwise. A friend came to my rescue, though, with a simple, yet delicious northern Italian (may my mother forgive me) recipe that can easily be adapted to feed one lonely cook or a houseful of guests. The beauty of this recipe is that it is inexpensive to make, takes a minimal amount of time and uses ingredients any cook will probably have already on hand. KENNY'S CHICKEN (Feeds 2 Italians or 4 hungry guests) 6 tablespoons butter About 1/2 cup olive oil 1 1/2 pounds chicken cutlets (any boneless piece of chicken will do in a pinch) Flour, seasoned to taste About 1 1/2 cups chicken broth 2 small lemons Rice for serving Fresh parsley for garnish

Melt 3 tablespoons butter with oil in large frying pan. Dredge the cutlets in flour, shaking off the excess. Brown the cutlets and remove from pan. Pour in 3/4 cup broth and let it reduce over high heat, while scaping the pan, for about 3 minutes. Return chicken to the pan and add about 1/2 cup broth. Cut 1 lemon into thin slices, place on chicken, cover pan and simmer for about 15 minutes. When cooked, remove the chicken and place on serving dish. Add 1/4 cup broth, remaining butter and the juice of 1/2 lemon to the pan and simmer until it thickens somewhat. Pour over chicken.

I usually serve it with rice, and garnish it with fresh parsley and remaining lemon slices.