This is not a dish I serve very often. In fact, it’s maybe a twice a year treat, but we had guests over this weekend and I had leftover marinara sauce in the freezer and chicken breasts and pasta on hand, so I had everything I needed already with the exception of mozzarella cheese and fresh basil.
The best part of this dish is the sauce. Preparing chicken parmesan is very simple. In fact, I had never learned how to make it, I just figured it out on my own. I’m not saying this to boast, I’m saying this because it’s simple to prepare and you should not feel intimidated and feel like it’s something you can only order in a restaurant.
I always begin by pounding out the chicken breasts. If they are too thick, then the outside will brown before the inside gets cooked thoroughly. I put the chicken breasts in a Ziplock bag so that I don’t get raw chicken juice all over the kitchen and always use a cutting board underneath. I pound until they are roughly 1/4″ thick. This isn’t an exact science.
I then make a little breading station. I just use plates and a bowl. Nothing fancy here! One one plate I just use all purpose flour. I know whenever I watch cooking shows on TV, they always say you need to season your flour. Don’t tell them, but I don’t season my flour. If that’s the most rebellious thing I do (which, it’s not), then I’m doing ok. I find that between the seasoned bread crumbs and sauce and fresh basil, I don’t miss adding additional salt to my dish. In a bowl I combine a couple of whole eggs and beat them with a fork and then on the last plate I lay down some Italian seasoned breadcrumbs. I don’t measure, I just pour everything out.
I take each chicken breast and run it through the flour, then egg, then breadcrumbs. I use a fork to assist with this process, otherwise my hands turn into a goopy mess.
In a deep skillet, I fill the bottom with just enough canola oil to cover the bottom. I don’t want to deep fry the breasts, just brown the coating until crisp and the inside is no longer pink.
While the breasts are still in the pan, I cover each one with some freshly shredded mozzarella cheese (I don’t use the pre-shredded mix, I grate my own) and cover the pan until the cheese is melted. I then remove the breasts and put them on a baking rack with foil underneath to drain off some of the oil. We don’t need that excess oil.
I serve the chicken parmesan over spaghetti, my homemade marinara sauce (link at the top of this post), freshly grated good parmesan cheese and fresh, chopped basil.
The friends we had over for dinner cleaned their plates. I mean down to the last drop!
If you try and make this at home, I would love to see a photo! Tag #ketchumkitchen on Instagram.