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Quick & Easy Chicken Parm for Two


  
Yes, its another chicken recipe to share with you today. We do eat a lot of chicken. I usually try to intersperse other recipes in between, but I messed up this week, so yes, its another chicken recipe, but it is not only a tasty recipe that I think you are going to really enjoy, but its a great store cupboard recipe, and perfectly sized for two.  You can easily adapt it to serve more if you wish.



I was slightly inspired by a recipe I found in Miguel Barclay's latest book, Super Easy One Pound Meals.  He has a recipe in there for a chicken parm, which uses skin on chicken thighs.  I got rid of the skin in favour of a cheesy breading, which is much more authentic to my way of thinking, and  . . .  dare I say it????  Why not . . .  a tad bit tastier.


I have to confess, I have tried a few recipes from his books, and I will be honest, they (to me) lack flavour.  I mean no offense, truly.  I did his Moussaka for us the other day, which was in his first book, I believe.  The photograph looked really good, and we quite like Moussaka.  



First off, the sauce was pretty tasteless, which was easy for me to fix.  I added some cinnamon, and thyme, and a splash of white wine.  I also chose to infuse the milk for the bechamel with some bay leaf. (Just warm the milk with a broken bay leaf added, and let sit for bout 10 minutes.)



The recipe called for eggplant/aubergine sliced lengthwise rather than crosswise, and layered in a pan with the lamb sauce and the bechamel, which in theory sounds great.   I thought to myself, what novel idea. It doesn't work. The end result is tough eggplant (especially when going by the cook time suggested in the recipe)  It was actually quite rubbery.  I scraped out the meat sauce and put it into a casserole dish, discarding the eggplant and bechamel.  I topped it with some frozen mash and Todd had it for dinner as a kind of Greek Shepherd's pie, which he did enjoy.  Lemons/lemonade . . .  so  . . .


Just sharing my experience, that's all.  I mean no harm.The chicken parm recipe in his first book sounds and looks delicious, but with a few changes, such as the cheese/crumb coating on the chicken, rather than skin.  To be honest, once you add the sauce the skin would  lose any crispness, the crumbs stand up much better to sauce, than skin.


He also uses plain passatta (sieved tomatoes) with some oregano added.  It sounded bland.  I used a basil and garlic marinara sauce, which costs approximately the same, but has a lot more flavour, containing more herbs and garlic . . .


This gets added at the very end, so the crumbs stay nice and crisp, and then I topped the marinara with some Italian Four Cheese Blend, which I also thought had more flavour.  It is a mix of mozzarella and other cheeses, so you still get the ooze, but it just tastes better.  (Again only my opinion!)


What I did like about his recipe was the idea of roasting potato cubes along with the chicken.  They got nice and crisp edged.  We quite liked them. 



I haven't costed the recipe with my changes, but I can't think that they would increase the cost by much as it is really only adding some herbs and a few different flavours.  I have a well stocked herb cupboard. 



I think on the whole his books are good for younger inexperienced cooks, the recipes make great canvases for cooks to play with, so its not all bad news.   He really tends to play it safe when it comes to flavours, and a more experienced cook can easily play with them and amp things up.


But that is really the mark of a good recipe isn't it . . .  its a recipe which anyone can cook, and which inspires you to want to cook, motivating you to want  to stretch your abilities/tastes a tiny bit.  You look at it and you say to yourself, what a great idea  . . . and you grab the ball and run with it.  Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. 


The changes I applied to this one worked, and they worked well.  We were both very pleased with our dinners.  I would not cook the moussaka one again.  I'll stick to my tried and true one instead.  I have always roasted my aubergine first and I would suggest if you try his, you do too, or you could just cook my tried and true recipe, which was adapted from one by the reliable Tamasin Day Lewis. I have never cooked one of her recipes that I did not fall in love with.


In any case, this was good.  It was delicious. It was quick. It was easy.

Yield: 2

Quick & Easy Chicken Parm

prep time: 10 minscook time: 30 minstotal time: 40 mins
This is a quick and easy meal, making use of some store cupboard ingredients. For those days when you are feeling lacking in inspiration but still want something really tasty to eat.

ingredients:

2 large skinless, boneless chicken thighs (alternately you can use small breasts)
4 TBS Panko Bread crumbs
2 TBS coarsely grated Parmesan cheese
salt and black pepper to taste
120ml good quality tomato and basil pasta sauce (1/2 cup)
4 TBS Italian four cheese blend
2 medium baking potatoes peeled and cubed
olive oil

instructions:

Preheat the oven to 190*C/375*F/ gas mark 5.  Have ready a baking
tray large enough to hold the chicken and potatoes in a single layer. 
Toss the potatoes in a bowl with a bit of oil and some seasoning. 
Scatter them onto the baking tray.

Lay the
 chicken thighs onto the baking tray in a single layer, stretching them
out and opening them up.  Season with some salt and black pepper. Mix
together the bread crumbs and Parmesan. Sprinkle evenly over top of the
chicken.  Drizzle with a tiny bit of olive oil.  Pop the tray into the
preheated oven.  Roast for 25 to 30 minutes, stirring the potatoes every
 10 minutes.  At the end of that time, spoon the tomato sauce over each
piece of chicken and scatter with the cheese blend. return to the oven
and roast until everything is heated through, the cheese has melted and
the chicken juices run clear.  Serve hot.
Note - this can easily be doubled or tripled to feed a larger family.
Created using The Recipes Generator




I don't know as I would bother with the potatoes again.  I think really rice or pasta would go much better, but again that's just my opinion.  Have a great day and Bon Appetit! 



QuickEdit
Marie Rayner
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2 comments:

  1. I made this for dinner tonight as I already had everything at home and I love Chicken Parma. This was very easy and with your additions, very tasty. I used a jar of Arrabiata sauce as that is what I usually buy to keep as an emergency sauce for those nights I want an easy, quick meal. I added fresh basil though as I had some growing in my kitchen windowbox.

    I liked the potatoes with them (Chicken Parma in Australia is a favourite pub meal and often served with chips and a salad, so the potatoes felt authentic, but that's probably just me - ha, ha!)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ohh, I think an Arrabiata Sauce would be lovely along with the fresh basil! I am so pleased you enjoyed! I love simple, quick and easy meals, which you have probably gathered by now! xo

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