Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Parmesan Chicken

I had the day off today with absolutely nothing to do, so I offered up my services to prepare our family meal tonight. I had done some more recipe hunting the other night, and came upon this amazing-looking Parmesan Chicken recipe.

Parmesan chicken? you say? Not Chicken Parmesan? Oh no! Parmesan chicken is MUCH different, but still quite tasty. I found this recipe at Simply Recipes while searching for something that wasn't pasta, since I made pasta for my family last time. This recipe looked simple and tasty, so I made a Kroger run to get the ingredients I was missing and came home to start cooking because my mother and sister had to be at VBS at our church.

First I gathered my ingredients.

~1 Minced clove of garlic
~1 Stick of unsalted butter, melted (though it isn't melted yet! I didn't want it to congeal!)
~1 Cup of plain, dry breadcrumbs
~1/3 Cup of grated Parmesan cheese
~2 Tblsp of fresh parsley (except I used dried, I do not know if it really matters, but it was easier that way... And ya know, college cooking = going the simplest way possible)
~1/4 Tsp of salt
~1/4 Tsp of garlic salt
~1/8 Tsp freshly ground black pepper
~1 Large pinch of Italian seasoning
~2 Lbs. of boneless/skinless chicken breast (not pictured, it was still defrosting!)

The first thing I did was to combine all of my dry ingredients (minus the minced garlic) into a bowl...In my ingredients list the Parmesan cheese was shredded, and here it is pictured grated... Well, remember when I talked about the AMAZING supernatural powers of the Magic Bullet? Well, its powers came in handy once more and turned my shredded Parmesan cheese to grated. So convenient!

You may notice that

And mix thoroughly. I just used my hands, but you could use a fork or a whisk if you really wanted to.

My next step was to successfully cut my boneless, skinless chicken breasts into chunks that were about 2x2. Some of them were slightly larger, some smaller, but I wasn't mad about it.

Then I minced some garlic, using another nifty garlic press that my parents own.

And then added the melted butter to form a savory garlic butter. Yum, unsaturated fats.

So then what happens next is you take a piece of chicken, soak it in the garlic butter for a second and then roll it around in the rather fragrant coating. Once a piece is successfully coated on all sides, place it on a 9x13 baking sheet. The directions say to add the excess garlic butter on top of the pieces on the sheet, but what I had left in my bowl of garlic butter was a thick mess of breadcrumbs and congealed garlic butter... So I decided to skip that step and go straight to cooking!

Once your dish is full, pop it into a 450 degree oven and bake for 15 minutes. After fifteen minutes, the chicken was fully cooked all the way through, but the coating on it was still a little soggy, so I put it in for an extra 4 minutes so that it could crisp up a little bit.

The finish product!

I decided to steam some broccoli and warm up some rolls left over from my sister's wedding and use those as side dishes.

I found that the chicken tastes a lot better when you let it cool for 5-10 minutes because otherwise, if you serve it too hot the coating comes off the chicken and the steam kind of muddles the flavor; but if you let it sit, then the coating is perfectly attached to the chicken and the flavors get a great chance to be expressed.

My family really enjoyed this recipe. My little sister even told me that it was good, which I feel is a great compliment!

Actually cooking this dish was a lot of fun, and it was very easy, too. Simple side dishes work well with it, and the 5 boneless, skinless chicken breast pieces I used were too much for 4 adults to eats, so there are plenty of leftovers!

Thanks for reading!

If you want to check out the original recipe, you can find it HERE

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