Dinner Tonight: Chicken Parmesan

We have entered that limbo between Christmas and New Year where time has stopped, I don’t know what day it is, I live on cookies and coffee, I haven’t gotten out of these stretchy pants in three days…you get my point.

I needed to change things up a bit for dinner tonight so I decided to whip up my Chicken Parmesan. It’s one of my favorite things to make and despite what you might think it is actually very easy to throw together. Did I mention you have dinner on the table in under an hour? And this recipe can be easily doubled or even tripled to feed a crowd without adding a lot of extra work. I call that a winner!

Chicken Parmesan
Serves: 4, Prep & cook time: 45 minutes

For the sauce:
1 teaspoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 small red bell pepper, diced
1 small onion, diced
½ cup dry red wine
1 (28 oz) can whole tomatoes
¼ cup Italian parsley, chopped
2 Tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
¼ teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
Pinch of sugar

For the chicken:
½ cup all-purpose flour
½ cup parmesan cheese, grated
1 cup Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
2 eggs, beaten
4 (4 oz.) boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Salt & pepper
Canola oil for frying

1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
3 cups spaghetti, linguini or angel hair pasta, cooked according to package directions

Preheat oven to 350°.

To prepare tomato sauce, heat 1 teaspoon olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add bell pepper, onion, and garlic to the pan and saute 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add wine to the pan and cook until reduced by half. Add tomatoes, crushing after they’re added, bring sauce to a low boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in parsley, basil, vinegar, and season to taste with salt & pepper and sugar.

While sauce is simmering, prepare chicken. Create a dredging station. In one dish, add flour, and season with salt and pepper. In a second dish, beat the eggs. In a third dish, combine breadcrumbs and parmesan. Set aside until ready to use.

Place chicken breasts between 2 sheets of heavy-duty plastic wrap. Using a meat mallet or rolling pin, flatten chicken to about ¼ inch thickness. Dredge each chicken breast first in flour, then dip in egg, then dredge in breadcrumbs.

Heat ¼ cup (or so) canola oil in a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Carefully add chicken to the hot oil and fry 4 minutes on each side or until golden (it doesn’t have to be cooked all the way at this point).

Ladle about a cup of sauce on the bottom of a 9×13 inch baking pan. Arrange chicken breasts over to. Sprinkle chicken with mozzarella cheese and bake for 15 minutes.

Serve one chicken breast and more sauce over your pasta of choice and enjoy!

Source: Ruth’s Table, 2022.

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