CHICKEN PARMIGIANA RECIPE
Chicken parmigiana can be likened to Italian crumbed chicken with toppings, typically including cheese and tomato sauce, but is it Italian? NO! This is a dish which has become famous all over the world and many mistaken it for being authentic but most variations are pretty un-Italian! Except, maybe, my one. As an Italian I have recreated this pub-classic with delicious authentic ingredients and believe me there is no going past this recipe for a cheesy chicken stack that is smothered in rich tomato and basil sauce. I even have two options for cheese on top, would you prefer buffalo mozzarella or burrata? Either way you will never order this out again. It might not be authentic, but I’ve created a Chicken Parmigiana that even my family would enjoy.
1 organic chicken breast
7 heaped tbsp breadcrumbs
3 heaped tbsp of Pecorino Romano
1 cup plain flour
Burrata Cheese (let it rest out of the fridge for approx. 30 min)
Fresh parsley (Chopped to garnish)
FOR THE SAUCE:
3 Garlic cloves
A handful of Basil
4 tbsp Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
700ml Italian Tomato Passata (1 bottle)
Salt & Pepper
2 deep plates
Kitchen paper towels
2 Baking plates
Kitchen Mallet/Meat Tenderiser
Large serving spoon
- Chicken parmigiana is made with the breast of the chicken, so take a piece and slice it into 2-3 pieces depending on the thickness.
- Place a sheet of baking paper on top of your chopping board and the slices of chicken on top. Then cover with another sheet of baking paper and press down.
- Beat the chicken using a kitchen mallet until flattened to your desired thickness and set aside. This will tenderise the chicken making it much better to work with and to eat too!
- Leave the chicken pieces to the side and start making the tomato sauce!
- Place a small pot on your stove at medium to low heat and add 4 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil (EVOO).
- Once the oil has started to warm up, crush the garlic cloves and add them into the pot. Cook for 30 seconds and use a wooden spoon to move it around – just make sure you don’t burn the garlic!
VINCENZO’S PLATE TIP: If your oil is too hot, turn the temperature down slightly and remove the pot from the stove for 30 seconds so none of the garlic burns! Cook it gently so the oil is completely infused.
- Next, add a bottle of passata to pot and mix well before adding a few basil leaves and mixing them through.
VINCENZO’S PLATE TIP: It is better to tear the basil leaves by hand then add them to the sauce. If you cut them using a chopping board with a knife, the flavors of basil will be left on the board!
- Cover with the lid and gently cook the sauce for 20 to 30 minutes on medium to low heat, stirring every so often.
- In the meantime, crack an egg in a bowl and whisk it before adding the juice of a lemon.
VINCENZO’S PLATE TIP: Lemon juice is a trick my Nonna uses mainly to cover the smell/any flavour of the egg.
- In a deep plate, mix together breadcrumbs, Pecorino Romano, and few pinches of fresh parsley. In another, pour out some flour.
- Coat the chicken with flour, slightly dusting off any excess before coating it with the egg, making sure to cover both sides.
- Let the excess egg drip off before coating it in the breadcrumb mixture. Make sure to cover the chicken with the breadcrumb mixture completely, you can also use your hands if you need to.
- Now, heat the sunflower oil in a pan and once hot, place the chicken inside and allow to cook until golden and crispy. You may need to turn the chicken over to make sure its cooked evenly – try to do this just once to give the perfect crunch to your chicken parmigiana.
VINCENZO’S PLATE TIP: To check if the oil is at the right temperature to start cooking your chicken add some breadcrumbs to it. If it starts to sizzle, the oil is ready to fry!
- The chicken will cook in approx. 1½ mins before you need to flip and cook the other side. This really depends on the thickness of your chicken though as it’s really important it’s cooked through.
- Place the fried chicken on a plate covered with kitchen paper then add another sheet on top to help drain the excess oil. Let the chicken rest for few minutes to crisp up too.
- Check the sauce and mix it well – at this point your garlic tomato sauce is ready to smother the chicken parmigiana!
- Get a flat (oven-safe) plate and pour 2 large scoops of the garlic tomato sauce into the middle of the plate.
- Place the fried chicken over the tomato sauce (in the centre of your plate) and add 2 more scoops of sauce on top as well.
- Next, tear the buffalo mozzarella into pieces with your hands, and cover the chicken with it before sprinkling a pinch of freshly chopped parsley on the top.
- Place this under the broiler/grill for a minute or until cheese is all melted.
VINCENZO’S PLATE TIP: Before baking the chicken, clean the milk from the mozzarella running over the plate to avoid this burning in the oven or making the dish soggy.
- If you want to use Burrata Cheese, repeat the same process but use a whole burrata instead of the mozzarella and again, put it under the broiler for one minute.
VINCENZO’S PLATE TIP: To use the Burrata cheese, take it out from the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before placing it on the chicken and broil. If it is a very warm temperature in your kitchen reduce this time.
HOW TO SERVE:
Chicken parmigiana should be served hot to your guests or just to yourself, be your own guest! If you eat the Burrata cheese version, smear the creamy burrata cheese over the chicken before you devour it!
Let it submerge entirely with that delicious garlic tomato sauce.
Maybe it is not an Italian dish, but I have a feeling I am going to make it often. It’s also a must try for my Nonna – what will she think?
E ora si mangia Vincenzo’s Plate….Enjoy!
Here are 2 more Chicken Recipes you Must try:
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