Dana's Chicken Parmesan w/ Spaghetti
1 Pack Boneless Skinless Chicken
1 cup Italian Seasoning Bread Crumbs
Butter (not margarine)
Extra Virgin Olive Oil (EVOO)
Kosher or Sea Salt, Course Ground Pepper, Garlic, Red Pepper Flakes (if desired)
8 oz. Mozzarella Cheese
Parmesan Cheese (I use a fresh block and grater)
Spaghetti (or whatever pasta you like)
Spaghetti Sauce (if you like Italian sausage, this recipe is good with that flavoring)
**I make my own, but you can use whatever jar brand you like or make YOUR own.
BREADING: Pour the bread crumbs into a zip-loc bag. You can add extra basil, oregano, garlic powder, etc. to your liking.
PREPARING CHICKEN: Beat the egg, trim fat off chicken and place chicken in the egg mixture. Coat all sides, sprinkle with Kosher or Sea Salt, Pepper, Garlic, and Red Pepper Flake (if you like that); set in frig till the oil is hot.
SKILLET: Heat skillet to just hot without anything, then add about 4 tablespoons EVOO, give it a few seconds then add about 2 tbsp butter (salted or unsalted) make sure all is hot; spat your fingers with water in pan if it bounces, it's hot enough. Be careful.
PAN SEARING: After you have coated the chicken with the bread crumb mixture, put 2 - 3 pieces at a time in the hot oil mixture. Brown each side and remove (don't cook all the way through). Continue to cook the rest of chicken; when all is done, place in a baking dish/pan greased with EVOO.
Smother the chicken with the sauce being sure to save plenty for the pasta. Sprinkle a thin layer of mozzarella on top and grate some parmesan on top.
BAKING: Cover with aluminum foil and bake at 325 for 1 hour. Uncover, sprinkle more mozzarella (to your liking) and bake again to melt. Top with fresh parmesan.
SERVING: Serve with spaghetti or any pasta and of course a wonderful salad. ENJOY!
TIPS: If you run low on oil while cooking, add a dab of butter and oil as needed. Let it get hot again before adding NEW chicken. Chicken will not sear (brown) if the oil is not hot. The cold chicken brings the oil temperature down quickly and then will just soak in oil not sear.
When preparing chicken, slice it to your liking. It can be thick or sliced in half to make thinner, etc.
I really love a homemade sauce with good Roma tomatoes, but play with this. When you have a lot of time to CREATE, make your own; experiment to your taste.
I really believe in the sea salt/kosher salt thing. They are not too expensive and worth it for your better meals; same with pepper. I use the grinder for everything now, but keep the fine on hand for kids that don't get into the course pepper for everyday meals.
Parmesan block lasts along time in frig so it is worth the buy because you can grate as needed.
don't be afraid of EVOO (extra virgin olive oil) it is a GOOD fat and our body needs it; embrace it!