Meat and Poultry

Chicken Parmigiana, an Italian American Classic

Loreto April 11, 2020

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Chicken Parmigiana, an Italian American Classic. Talk about luxurious and flavorful! Beautifully breaded chicken cutlets baked in a rich tomato basil sauce topped with copious amounts of grated Parmigiano Reggiano and fresh mozzarella! However, when you see everyone take the first bite and there is that eye roll and silent mmmmmmm, you know you have made a real crowd pleaser!

Song of the day: “Don’t Stop Believin'” by Journey.

Chicken Parmigiana-feature

Chicken Parmigiana, an Italian American Classic. This is probably one of the most favored dishes in North America for those of us Italians who live here. It is seen on Italian restaurant menus everywhere and there is that rich color of the sauce hosted by the crispy golden battered fried chicken, not to mention the beautifully melted mozzarella and Parmigiano, hence mouthwatering moment! lol!

 

 

Easter meal idea…………….

What I have heard from most people is that it does not feel like Easter. Yes, the world is feeling the isolation, there is social distancing, and lots of us are away from our families not being able to get together for that special family meal to celebrate Easter!

I myself am away from Nicoletta. There is me and the cats, Wonton and Bailey. Nicoletta is in Rome with her family and our other cat Olympia. For me, I would not want Nicoletta to cancel out the spirit of this festive weekend. In Italy, it is so filled with tradition, spirituality, and most of all, great delicious food and festive meals!

Hence, I am going to make the best of it. Let’s not let this thing beat us down and kill the true heart that we are as a people. It is true we are at a social distance, however, we are all in the same boat, so why not celebrate the things that we are grateful for and for sure whip up a platter of the amazing and delicious  Chicken Parmigiana!

Maybe we need a world conference call at mealtime so we can unite for a virtual meal together, lol.

Chicken Parmigiana-eggs and breadcrumbs

Time to get this plate going…………………

Some pretty simple ingredients for this Chicken Parmigiana, an Italian American Classic,  and it goes something like this:

  • boneless chicken breast (I buy organic free-range, well, because happy chickens are better tasting!)
  • Italian style breadcrumbs
  • Panko crumbs
  • eggs (organic free-range again)
  • half & half cream
  • good quality San Marzano stewed tomatoes
  • garlic
  • e.v.o. oil
  • fresh basil
  • Parmigiano Reggiano
  • fresh mozzarella
  • salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika

Chicken Parmigiana-dredge

Don’t be shy, come into the kitchen with me……..

Wash your hands, I bet you haven’t heard that enough these days.  But however, a good thing to do anyway! So let’s get started and this is what we have to do first:

  1. Firstly we need to get our sauce going, so into the pot goes oil and pressed peeled garlic. The reason that I do this is I want all that garlic flavor to get into the oil before starting the heat. The end result, a very wonderful flavor base for the tomatoes that are going to go in next, along with that ever so pleasing aromatic fresh basil.
  2. Secondly, we need to fillet the chicken breast. I picked up these lovely plump larger ones and made three cutlets out of one breast. Once you have them filleted, I cover them in plastic wrap and pound them with a meat cleaver to flatten and tenderize them. On goes some seasoning on both sides and I mix the bread crumbs and panko, plus beat the eggs with some seasoning and half and half cream.
  3. Thirdly, now the fun begins and we need to coat these fillets. Into the egg wash they go, then into the bread crumbs, back into the egg, and finally a last coating of the crumbs and that is it. They are ready to fry up. You may be asking why double dip and coat. Well, because that will give us a wonderful crispy thick coating that will pair nicely and not breakdown with the sauce.
  4. Lastly, into a shallow oil fry pan to get all nice and golden brown. It doesn’t matter that they may not be fully cooked, they are going into the oven for a bit to mingle with the tomato sauce and cheeses.

Chicken Parmigiana-prep-in the pan

Almost time for the oven………………

  1. So our cutlets are beautiful and golden brown sat on some paper towel to take off any excess oil and into a baking dish they go! I don’t put any sauce on the bottom of the dish as I want to preserve some of that crispiness for texture diversity!
  2. On goes your tomato sauce that has been simmering low and slow on the stovetop. Get that cheese grater and sprinkle a generous amount of Parmigiano as that will give us a nice melted bite to the mix.
  3. Lastly, some of that creamy milky fresh mozzarella cut into rounds and placed on top. Okay, the oven is preheated to 400 degrees F and in you go uncovered.

Chicken Parmigiana-in the pan

Nothing but heavenly Italian aromas here……………

I was upstairs cleaning up the studio and came down the stairs to the most incredible rich  Italian aromas. Tomato sauce, fried chicken cutlets and looking into the oven that cheese is melted and out of the oven my lovelies you come. Take a look. Are you hungry yet?

Let’s plate these babies up!

Chicken Parmigiana-board     

I want to dive right in………………

This looks amazing. We can’t have a dish like this without some good homemade Italian wine! I have to cut a piece and taste it, I am wiping my mouth right now because it is watering so much!

I love that the crispness is not gone, it tastes buttery and I love that sound in my mouth as I bite in. The richness of the sauce so lovingly caresses this cutlet into an embrace worth a thousand words but I can’t tell you what those words would be as my mouth is full. The Parmigiano is dancing on my tongue and that mozzarella is so creamy, gooey good.

I have to say the chicken is so moist and tender and that coating has ensured that for sure. It is so juicy in my mouth that I have a need for that napkin again. That is three times now, may have to put a warning…… causes extreme mouth wateriness! lol.

Last thoughts!

It is a tough time and sometimes feels like we have to climb a large mountain to even think about celebrating, however, balance is key. There is a time to mourn and there is a time for celebration and end result is some kind of balance that will differ among us all.  We are strong and united we are one. Let’s be grateful and send our love to the ones that have lost so many during this time. May they be at peace.

This Chicken Parmigiana, an Italian American Classic  may not be the be all to end all but it sure feels good going in and down.

Happy Easter everyone! Buona Pasqua!

A big virtual hug and lots of love to all of you! (social distancing and all, lol.)

Enjoy

Song of the day: “Don’t Stop Believin'”  by Journey.

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Chicken Parmigiana-feature

Chicken Parmigiana, an Italian American Classic

  • Author: Loreto
  • Prep Time: 35 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1 hour
  • Total Time: 1 hour 35 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 6 people 1x
  • Category: main meat
  • Method: stove top/ oven
  • Cuisine: Italian American

Description

Chicken Parmigiana, an Italian American Classic.  Talk about luxurious and flavorful! Beautifully breaded chicken cutlets baked in a rich tomato basil sauce topped with copious amounts of grated Parmigiano Reggiano and fresh mozzarella! However, when you see everyone take the first bite and there is that eye roll and silent mmmmmmm, you know you have made a real crowd pleaser!


Ingredients

Tomato sauce:

  • 1 x 796 ml can of  good quality San Marzano tomatoes
  • 2 Tbsp e.v.o. oil
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 4 fresh basil leaves
  • sea salt and fresh cracked pepper

Chicken cutlets:

  • 2 large boneless chicken breast (I use organic free-range)
  • 4 large eggs (organic free-range too)
  • 1/4 cup half and half cream
  • 4 cups Italian-style bread crumbs
  • 1 cup Panko crumbs
  • fine sea salt, fresh cracked black pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika
  • 1/2 cup safflower oil or peanut oil for frying

Finishing touches:

  • 1 large fresh mozzarella cut into rounds
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano
  • 1/4 cup freshly chopped parsley

Instructions

Tomato sauce:

  1. Drizzle oil into a medium-size pot.  Peel and press garlic and place it into the oil. Move it around to infuse garlic into the oil. Turn on heat to a medium setting.
  2. Pour in tomatoes mashing them up,  and throw in basil leaves tearing them up a bit to release the aroma. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a simmer and lower heat to a slow simmer.
  3. Cover partially and stir from time to time to make sure it is not sticking to the bottom of the pot.  Cook for about 30 minutes.

Chicken cutlets:

  1. While the sauce is simmering, take each chicken breast and cut into three fillets. Place a few fillets on plastic wrap and cover with additional plastic wrap and pound with a meat cleaver until flattened a bit. Do this too all the fillets.
  2. Season with salt, pepper, paprika, onion powder, garlic powder on both sides and set aside.
  3. In one bowl beat eggs, and half and half with a pinch of the seasoning blend. Whisk until well incorporated.
  4. In another bowl, mix Italian-style breadcrumbs with Panko crumbs.
  5. Take seasoned chicken fillet and dip in egg mixture making sure they are well coated then lift and let any excess egg drip off. Place into bread/panko and coat well. Then back into the egg mixture and lastly into the bread crumbs again. Place on a baking sheet.  Do this for all the chicken fillets.
  6. In a large deep frying pan heat up oil. Place however many cutlets that will fit nicely into pan. Lay in away from you so the oil does not splash you. Fry for about 2 minutes a side or until golden brown, then turn over. Take out of pan and pat with a paper towel to take off any excess oil. Continue this until all the cutlets are fried. Set aside.

Final touches:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F. and get a couple of large baking dishes.
  2. Place the chicken cutlets in each dish.
  3. Top with the tomato sauce and sprinkle with the grated Parmigiano and slices of mozzarella.
  4. Place dishes into the middle of the oven uncovered and bake for approximately 20-25 minutes or until cheese is nicely melted.
  5. Take out of the oven and sprinkle with freshly chopped parsley.
  6. Ready to serve.

Enjoy!


Notes

I used organic free-range chicken and eggs, you can use what you have.

If you don’t have the Italian-style bread crumbs, just mix up regular bread crumbs with grated Parmigiano, salt, pepper, paprika, onion powder, garlic powder,  dried parsley, and dried oregano.

Use whatever oil you prefer frying with, I usually use safflower or peanut oil, however, you can use canola or whatever you have.

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Chicken Parmigiana-in the plate  

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14 Comments

  • Avatar
    Reply chefkreso April 12, 2020 at 12:53 pm

    Love Chicken Parmigiana, this is such a delicious recipe!

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto April 15, 2020 at 7:42 am

      Thank you Chef! Yes it is truly a classic and delivers nothing but flavor and texture every time. Always make plenty because there are alwaays takers for seconds and thirds!
      Cheers!

  • Avatar
    Reply Bernice Hill April 14, 2020 at 4:14 pm

    Things will get better Loreto, we have to believe!! But for now we’re thankful of our health and that we have the technology to stay in touch with our friends and loved ones.
    Chicken Parm is THE perfect comfort food dish right now. I’m a little worried because I’m on my last jar of home made passata but of course I have some lovely mozzarella in the fridge. I’m halfway there!

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto April 15, 2020 at 7:35 am

      That is absolutely fantastic you have a start on the ingredients and well on your way to making this uber delicious dish. Yes we have to keep positive and we are very fortunate that we have the technology to reach out to everyone. Can you imagine years ago no cell phones, no computers that would be quite challenging.
      Stay safe and healthy and strong!
      Cheers!

  • Avatar
    Reply Vanessa April 14, 2020 at 10:39 pm

    My husband loves chicken parm but I must admit that I have never made it at home…well that is about to change!

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto April 15, 2020 at 7:32 am

      That’s the way to jump in Vanessa. It is so easy and you are going to love it I bet. I think your husband will be quite happy so all in all a win win situation!Thanks for checking this Chicken Parmigiana out!
      Happy cooking!

  • Avatar
    Reply Kristen April 15, 2020 at 6:29 am

    Such a delicious dish and perfectly comforting at a time like this.

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto April 15, 2020 at 7:30 am

      Thank you Kristen. Yes times like these calls for heart felt prepared meals and this one has plenty of that. The end result some pretty happy home bound campers!
      Stay safe and healthy!
      Cheers!

  • Avatar
    Reply Jen April 15, 2020 at 6:40 am

    Totally great comfort food!

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto April 15, 2020 at 7:29 am

      Thank you Jen.
      You are so right this dish just wraps you in a warm loving foodie embrace and the flavors rich and delicious. What more could you ask for!
      Have a great day!

  • Avatar
    Reply Shareba April 18, 2020 at 8:51 pm

    I loved the step-by-step walkthrough for this recipe! Lovely chicken parm 🙂

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto April 20, 2020 at 11:01 am

      Thank you. Trying to make it simple and easy to make so people will enjoy this luxuriously delish dish!
      Cheers and have fun cooking!

  • Avatar
    Reply Kelly Neil April 20, 2020 at 6:22 am

    Yum, this looks so amazing. Bookmarking it to add to our family meal rotation. Also, Don’t Stop Believin’ is one of my all-time FAVOURITE songs!

    • Loreto
      Reply Loreto April 20, 2020 at 10:59 am

      Thank you Kelly. Such an amazing song and has that energy to get you singing and lifting your spirits! A perfect pair while making this super delicious meal!
      Have fun cooking and let me here you singing!
      Ciao!

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