For me, this is an Italian / American "Comfort Food". Although this recipe for Chicken Parmesan seems to have a lot of steps, it's really quite an easy recipe, and I always get rave reviews when I serve it.
You could easily do this recipe by using eggplant, for an amazing vegetarian meal. Cut the eggplant into rounds, without peeling, then bread and fry it as in the recipe for the chicken, only have the oil at a higher temperature, 375 degrees, and only cook it long enough to brown it. Then, when you place it in the oven, only cook it long enough for the cheese to melt
To cook with veal, cook it the same way as the chicken.
I wouldn't use seafood, cheese really doesn't go well with any seafood, and it's not very forgiving if it's overcooked.
- 3 Each Chicken Breasts, boneless, skinless
- 1 1/2 Cups All-purpose Flour
- 1 Tablespoon Butt Kickin' Italian Blend
- 1 Teaspoon Coarse Kosher Salt
- 2 Each Egg, Beaten
- 1 Tablespoon Milk
- 1 1/2 Cups Seasoned Bread Crumbs, Seasoned
- 1/4 Cup Parmesan Cheese
- 1 Tablespoon Butt Kickin' Italian Blend, to taste
- 1 Teaspoon Coarse Kosher Salt
- 1/2 Cup Vegetable Oil, for frying
- 1 Jar Spaghetti Sauce
- 1/2 Pound Whole Milk Mozzarella Cheese, sliced
1. Begin by slicing the chicken in half to make 6 thinner pieces.
2. Lay the sliced, thinner chicken breasts on a clean platter.
3. Get 2 larger bowls ready, and one smaller one. Place the flour in a smaller bowl, along with the Italian Blend, and the Salt. Place the eggs into the smaller bowl, whisk them up, then add the milk, and whisk until smooth. Mix the Bread Crumbs, Parmesan Cheese, Italian Blend, and Salt in the other larger bowl.
The milk helps to emulsify the egg yolks. And, if you didn't use it, the egg coating would be quite thick, and you'll end up with a heavier batter on the chicken.
4. Place the vegetable oil into a heavy bottomed pan, like a black frying pan, to a depth of about 1/4". Heat this to a medium high temperature.
Set your oven to 350 degrees, and let it warm up while you're frying the chicken.
Dredge the chicken in flour, shake off any excess, then in the eggs, then in the bread crumb mixture. The flour help the eggs to stick to the chicken, and the eggs, give the bread crumbs something to adhere to.
Place in the fry pan, making sure that you don't crowd it. and fry until each piece of chicken is crisp and lightly browned. Be careful, because if the heat is too high, you can burn the chicken, and it'll end up dry.
5. Cook the chicken just until they're browned, and set on a parchment lined sheet pan. This can all be done up to a day ahead of time, and held in the refrigerator.
6. I had made a meat sauce a few days ago, so I thinned it down with a can of tomato sauce, as it was quite thick. Coat the top of each fried chicken breast with a little sauce, then lay the sliced mozzarella on top of that.
I know it seems sacrilegious, but, for this dish, I sometimes use sauce right out of a jar with one tablespoon of my Italian Seasoning Blend added to it for some extra flavor. You really don't want a chunky sauce so don't use one that you've added onions or meat to.
7. Cook for 20 - 25 minutes at 350 degrees. The cheese will melt, and the chicken will finish cooking, but not be dry.
8. 1 hour before you want to serve:
Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.
9. To Serve:
Place a puddle of sauce on a plate, then place one of the Chicken Parmesan pieces over top.
Since I've got sauce already cooking, I almost always serve this with some type of pasta.
11. You could prep this entrée by completing through step #6, up to the day before you want to serve it.
12. When you're ready to cook, place the chicken in a pre-heated 350 degree oven for 30 minutes. Since the chicken is cold, it'll take a little longer to heat up, then finish cooking.
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