Chicken Parmigiana

This is probably one of those basic recipes that everyone in the world (but me) knows, but I’ve always been scared of making food that sounded, you know, foreign.  Like just because it has a fancy-smancy name that means it’s also complicated to make, right?  Well, there’s another cooking misconception down the the drain because I found out last night Chicken Parmigiana is just about the easiest thing in the world to make.  And it turned out very very good with very little effort or time on my part.  That’s definitely a recipe I can get behind for nights when I’m tired or just don’t feel like cooking, but I still want a nice meal instead of greasy take-out or pizza.

Chicken Parmigiana

Chicken Parmigiana

adapted from Everyday Food: Great Food Fast from the kitchens of Martha Stewart Living

Dinner | Servings: 4
Prep time: 10 min | Cook time: 15 min | Total time: 25 min

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup plain breadcrumbs
  • 3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 8 chicken cutlets or 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast pieces, halved horizontally
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 2 cups of jarred tomato sauce
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 6 oz. mozzarella cheese, preferably fresh*, cut into eight 1/4 inch-thick slices

*I had no idea there was a different between fresh mozzarella and um, regular mozzarella until this recipe instructed me to find the “fresh” kind. It was kind of hard to find since I didn’t know what I was looking for, but I eventually found it hidden among all the “normal” cheeses at my grocery store. If you are cheese-challenged like me, look for a white cheese that is roundish and soft. Definitely was very good, I’ll have to find more recipes that use it.

The Process

  1. Heat the broiler. Spread the tomato sauce onto the bottom of a 10-by-15-inch backing dish (I used 9-by-13).
  2. Combine the breadcrumbs and parmesan in a shallow bowl. Season both sides of the chicken with salt and pepper. Dip the chicken in the beaten egg, then dredge in the breadcrumbs mixture, turning to coat both sides.
  3. Heat 2 tbsp. of oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Place 4 chicken cutlets in the skillet; cook until golden, 1 to 2 minutes per side. Transfer the browned chicken cutlets to the baking dish, placing them on top of the sauce. Repeat with remaining oil and chicken cutlets.
  4. Top each cutlet with a slice of mozzarella. Broil about 4 inches from the heat source until the sauce is hot and the cheese is melted and lightly browned in spots, 5-8 minutes. Serve immediately.

I made this with my favorite mashed potatoes.