Chicken Parmesan

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Yield
Serves 4.
Prep Time
Total Time

Ingredients

Sauce:

1/3 Cup olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, chopped
2 bay leaves
2 (28-ounce) cans whole peeled tomatoes, drain them and crush them roughly with hands
2/3 Cups basil, roughly torn (reserve some for topping at the end)
1/2 Cup Kalamata Olives, pitted and halved
1/2 Teaspoon red pepper flakes (adjust if you don't want the heat)
Pinch of sugar
Salt and pepper to taste
Breading:
2/3 Cup all-purpose flour, seasoned well with salt and pepper
2 large eggs, beaten with 1 Tablespoon of water
1 Cup Panko bread crumbs (you can use regular if you like)
1 Cup grated Parmesan, plus some for sprinkling at the end, and use the good stuff
1/2 Cup parsley, chopped
2 Teaspoons garlic powder
1 pound of cooked spaghetti
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, pounded thin
8-16 ounces mozzarella, thinly sliced (depending on how much cheese you like)
Canola or peanut oil for frying
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Helpful Equipment

meat tenderizer

Directions

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees. For sauce, chop onions and garlic. Add olive oil to a pan over medium-high heat. Once oil is hot, add onions, garlic and bay leaf and cook them until they are soft and translucent.

2) Add olives (halved and pitted) and basil. Stir it all together for just a minute or two. Add tomatoes. Drain tomatoes and just loosely crush them with your hands. As they cook, they’ll fall apart even more. Stir this all together and let it simmer for 10 minutes or so.

3) Add sugar, red pepper flakes, and salt and pepper. Let this simmer for a while on low as you make the rest of meal.

4) Trim off any huge bits of fat off of each chicken breast and then very loosely place a breast between two pieces of plastic wrap.

5) With a meat pounder, gently pound the chicken until it flattens out. You can use a rolling pin for this also.

6) Make a breading station next. You need three bowls: One with the seasoned flour mixture, one with the eggs, and one with the bread crumbs mixed with the grated parmesan, garlic powder, and chopped parsley

7) Dip a chicken breast in the flour mixture. Hit off any extra. Move the chicken to the egg mixture and submerge it completely so it’s well coated. Move it to the breadcrumbs. Press down on the chicken breast to make sure the breadcrumbs really stick to it.

8) Move each chicken breast to a wire rack while you prep the other breasts. Let the breasts sit for just a few minutes like this which will give the breading some time to dry out a bit and really stick to the chicken.

9) Heat up 1/2 inch canola oil in a large frying pan over high heat to 350 degrees.

10) Add two breaded breasts at a time and cook them for about 5 or 6 minutes a side until they are golden brown. Once they are done, move them to a different wire rack (different because the other one has chicken juices on it).

11) Add a thin layer of tomato sauce to the bottom of a large baking pan and then layer all chicken breasts on top of the sauce.

12) Top the breasts with all of remaining sauce – chicken will basically disappear in the sauce and that’s okay – then top that with sliced mozzarella and sprinkle the whole thing with some more Parmesan.

13) Bake for about 20-25 minutes at 350 degrees or until the cheese is well-melted and bubbling.

14) Make your pasta while this bakes.

15) When chicken is done, let it cool for a few minutes and then serve it all together. Add some more chopped basil to top the dish.

Adapted from a Tyler Florence recipe.