We may be geeks, but that doesn’t mean we don’t know how to create great things in the kitchen. Some of the best dishes can be made quickly and easily as long as you know what you’re doing. Let’s get cooking!
One of my favorite foods growing up was chicken parmigiana – of course, who doesn’t love a good chicken parm? And as I started to learn how to cook, I kept trying to make a good chicken parm, to varying results. But I think I’ve finally perfected it, and it’s the first step that’s the key to success with it.
To put this together properly, you’ll need some flour, a couple of eggs, bread crumbs or panko, chicken breasts, canola oil, sauce and shredded cheese. Some great side dishes to go with the main course include pasta (duh), broccoli or green beans.
As always, pre-heat your oven to about 350 degrees. Adjust the heat of your oven accordingly. Every oven seems to be a little different with how well it heats up… Also, take a capful or two of the oil and pour it into a pan over medium heat on the stove to get it cooking.
Here’s that all-important first step: Place three bowls on the counter. Fill the first with flour; the second with egg yolks, mixed a bit; the third with your bread crumbs or panko. If your bread crumbs/panko aren’t seasoned, add black pepper, oregano, crushed red pepper and whatever other seasonings you want on your chicken breasts, stir until the mixture is .
Take each chicken breast and dip them first in the flour, covering both sides. Then, take the chicken and dip it in the egg. Finally, cover the chicken breast with the panko or bread crumbs all over to give it an even distribution. Once you’ve covered the chicken breasts, put them into the pan with the oil heating up on the stove.
You’re not going to cook the chicken breast all the way through on the stove, just enough to give the panko a nice brown coat. The majority of the cooking for the chicken will be done in the oven. Once the sides have a nice brown going, flip them over and give them the same treatment on the other side.
Repeat these steps for however many pieces of chicken you want to cook, replenishing and reheating the oil as needed – you don’t want too much oil in the pan, otherwise the chicken gets too greasy. Once the breading on the chicken is cooked on both sides, place the chicken breasts in a baking pan that has a thin layer of the sauce you plan to use down on the bottom, to make sure the chicken doesn’t stick while you’re trying yo cook it.
At this point, you probably want to start in with your sides, putting a pot of water for your pasta or to steam your vegetables.
Once the chicken is in the baking pan with the thin layer of sauce on the bottom, take our sauce and put it over top. I, personally, like to use a vodka sauce for my cooking needs, as I find it’s less likely to give me heartburn over other kinds of sauce, but choose whatever suits your tastes, obviously.
And it wouldn’t be a chicken parmigiana without the cheese! Spread your favorite Italian cheeses of choice on top of the chicken breast. Once you’re done with the cheese, put the baking pan in the over, uncovered, and let it cook until the cheese has a nice color to it. Make sure the chicken is cooked all the way through by cutting the largest piece with a knife and making sure the meat is white.
Finish off whatever side dish you’re making and prep a plate. You’re in for a great meal. Bon appetite!