Quote from Intro:

"Anyone can cook, and most everyone should. It's a sorry sign that many people consider cooking 'from scratch' an unusual and even rare talent.
In fact, it is a simple and rewarding craft, one that anyone can learn and even succeed at from the get-go."
-Bittman, HTCE

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Chicken Parmigiana (Variation of Sauteed Chicken Cutlets)

This recipe is exactly why I love this cookbook. One night I had two chicken breasts defrosted in the fridge and not a clue what I was going to make for dinner. I wondered if I could "wing" Chicken Parmesan but I doubted it would be good without a few guidelines. Bittman to the rescue!

The meat: In this recipe Bittman asks you to pound the chicken and usually I do, but these breasts were from super chickens and I knew that pounding them out would just destroy the meat. I also had probably much less than 1 1/2 pounds of chicken since all I had was two breasts. Instead of pounding these, I took a page from America's Test Kitchen and I completely butterflied the breasts instead. This way I had four chicken breasts total to get fried crumb goodness on. What was really amazing is that even though it was only half of a breast my husband couldn't tell that he was really getting less meat per serving.

The crumbs: Several times on cooking shows I have heard chefs say that homemade bread crumbs are the only way to go. I use to scoff at what I thought was a snobby opinion of store bought bread crumbs. Then when I made this recipe I had a ton of extra bread laying around so I decided to try to make my own. What can I say? All those chefs had been right! Compared to homemade bread crumbs store bought ones taste like sawdust! I might still buy panko crumbs, but really I think you could make these too by just pulsing your bread for less time in your food processor.

The sauce: I am so use to making this sauce I was excited to see it used in this recipe. Read a whole post about it here.

The best thing about this recipe? Dinner is done in 30 minutes and you don't have to worry about the chicken cooking totally in the frying pan because it will finish cooking in the oven. This way you can cook the breasts until they are just browned and then take them out.

I served this wonderful dish over angel hair pasta and my husband and I loved it! The homemade bread crumbs added a nice crunch that would not have been possible without them.

HTCE p.678

1 comment:

  1. I just made this Wednesday and completely agree with you. Delicious! So fresh--and like you, I'm a huge fan of his tomato sauce!


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