Thursday, February 21, 2013

Chicken Parmigiana & Stuffed Zucchini

 I know I promised healthy foods, and healthy foods you will get!  But for Valentine's Day this year I had to cook my hubby one of his favorite meals, and holidays are usually slack days for us.  So I would like to present you with Chicken Parmigiana from The Pioneer Woman & Stuffed Zucchini!  Both of these turned out to be great options for dinner, so here you go!

Tip:  I recommend preparing certain ingredients before you begin the recipes to make the process as smooth as possible. (Ex: chop vegetables, measure liquid and/or solid ingredients such as canola oil, sugar, and flour).

Chicken Parmigiana

Total Time: 1 hr 20 min
Prep: 20 min
Cook: 1 hr
Yield: 4

¼ cup all-purpose flour
Salt & freshly ground black pepper
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, trimmed & pounded flat*
½ pound thin linguine
¼ cup olive oil
1 tablespoons butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ whole medium onion, chopped
¼ cup + 2 tablespoons chicken stock
21 ¾ ounces crushed tomatoes
½ tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley, plus more for serving
½ cup freshly grated Parmesan, plus more if needed
Basil chiffonade, for serving**

1. Mix the flour and some salt and pepper together on a large plate. Dredge the flattened chicken breasts in the flour mixture. Set aside.
2. Cook the linguine until al dente.
3. Heat the olive oil and butter together in a large skillet over medium heat. When the butter is melted and the oil/butter mixture is hot, fry the chicken breasts until nice and golden brown on each side, 8 to 10 minutes per side (until there is no more pink in the center). Remove the chicken breasts from the skillet and set aside.
4. Without cleaning the skillet, add the garlic and onions and gently stir for 2 minutes. Pour in the stock and scrape the bottom of the pan, getting all the flavorful bits off the bottom. Allow the stock to cook down until reduced by half, about 2 minutes.
5. Pour in the crushed tomatoes and stir to combine. Add the sugar and more salt and pepper to taste. Allow to cook for 30 minutes.
6. Toward the end of the cooking time, add the chopped parsley and give the sauce a final stir.
7. Carefully lay the chicken breasts on top of the sauce and completely cover them in the grated Parmesan. Place the lid on the skillet and reduce the heat to low. Allow to simmer until the cheese is melted and the chicken is thoroughly heated. Add more cheese to taste.
8. Place the cooked noodles on a plate and cover with the sauce. Place the chicken breasts on top and sprinkle with more parsley and the basil chiffonade. Serve immediately.

*Be sure to pound the chicken to about ½ in thick so it cooks evenly & lay a piece plastic wrap between the chicken and mallet to keep from getting a metal taste
**Chiffonade - a cooking technique in which herbs or leafy green vegetables (such as spinach and basil) are cut into long, thin strips

Stuffed Zucchini

Total Time: 30 min
Prep: 10 min
Cook: 20 min
Yield: 4

2 zucchinis
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 small yellow onion, chopped
¼ teaspoon curry powder
½ tomato, chopped
1 teaspoon thyme
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon sour cream
Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
Parsley, freshly chopped

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
2. Run the zucchinis under water and gently scrub them clean.
3. Slice the zucchinis in half length-wise.  (You can cut off the ends if you prefer, but I like to leave them on so later all of the ingredients don’t fall off the ends).  Spoon out the insides of the zucchinis leaving about ½ in. thickness and set the pulp aside for later.  They should now look like boat-like shells.
5. Give the zucchini pulp a good chop, along with the onion and tomato.  Make sure to remove the liquid seeded part of the tomato to keep the mixture from becoming too fluid.
6. Sauté the onion in canola oil, and when they’re slightly browned add the curry.  Sauté for an additional 30 seconds, and then transfer the onions to a small mixing bowl.
7. To the onion add the thyme, salt, pepper, sour cream, tomato and zucchini pulp.  Combine all of the ingredients until well mixed.
8. Coat the bottom of a baking dish with cooking spray and place the zucchini halves inside.  Spoon the mixture evenly into each zucchini boat and top with Parmesan cheese.
9. Place the baking dish in the preheated oven for about 20 minutes.  For the last 2 minutes turn the oven to broil to brown the cheese on top.  Sprinkle some coarsely chopped parsley on top and serve immediately.

1 comment:

  1. This looks wonderful .. will have to try that chicken parm!


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