Monday, May 10, 2010

Chicken Parmesan

Chicken parm, the Americanized version of eggplant parmigiana, is a recipe I only started making in the last few months. It's my male acquaintance's favorite dish that I make so far -- however, after repeated testing, I've determined that for it to be good versus excellent chicken parm, the quality of ingredients is vital. For that purpose I am being strangely specific with this recipe. It's time and labor intensive but worth the work if you want to impress someone. This recipe serves 3.

3 kosher, organic chicken breasts, thawed (don't use large, mass produced varieties, they don't have near the flavor of naturally raised chicken meat)
2 eggs, beaten
1 tbsp milk
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
dash of salt
1 cup bread crumbs
3 tbsp butter
1 clove garlic, chopped finely

Heat a large skillet over medium. Whisk together the milk, eggs, salt and red pepper flakes. Put the butter and garlic in the pan and using a spatula, whisk together. Dip the cutlets into the egg mixture then toss in the bread crumbs and place into the skillet individually. Once one side is browned, flip and repeat until they're all done. Set them on a small baking sheet and drizzle with the remaining garlic butter, set aside.

1 can fire roasted tomatoes, crushed
1 can regular tomatoes, crushed
1/2 cup basil leaves whole, or 3 tbsp chopped finely
3 cloves garlic
2 tbsp dried oregano
2 tbsp olive oil
salt to taste
1 lb cooked rigatoni pasta or 1 box dry
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella
3 tbsp finely shredded parmesan cheese

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Combine all the above ingredients except the pasta in a large saucepan over medium low heat and simmer for at least half an hour. In this time, cook and drain the pasta. Put a small amount of mozzarella in the bottom of a baking pan, follow with the pasta, then the sauce and then the rest of the mozzarella. Bake in the middle rack for 30 minutes. Put the chicken breasts on the bottom oven rack and bake along with it. Remove from the oven, transfer the chicken onto the pasta and serve.

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