Some recipes you make over and over again for a reason– they are just plain good. Chicken parmesan has been a favorite of mine since I was a little girl. There is something so classic and simple, and in my opinion, perfect, about the flavor combination. It is a total comfort meal. Although we tend to associate feelings of comfort and warmth with the winter, I find myself gravitating towards this dish in the summer months, especially when tomatoes and basil are at the peak of freshness. For the tomato sauce, I made my favorite 3 ingredient tomato sauce. It is the easiest, most delightful sauce ever, and is my go-to simple tomato sauce since I first read about it a few years back. I highly recommend you give it a try! To lighten up the meal a bit I decided to serve it with Della Arborio rice instead of the traditional pasta. I cooked the rice in chicken broth and a bit of white wine, making it almost like a risotto. Chicken Parmesan on top of parmesan arborio rice?! Brilliant! I love, love, loved this meal! It’s a new twist on an old favorite and I’ll be making it again soon!
Chicken Parmesan Rice // Serves 2
Sauce– (or you can use store bought)
Whole Peeled San Marzano Tomatoes, 28 oz. Can
Butter, 5 Tbsp
1 Yellow Onion. Peeled and Cut in Half
Della Arborio Rice, 2-3 Cups
Chicken Breast Cutlets, 2
Panko Breadcrumbs, 2 Cups
Parmesan Cheese, ½ Cup, divided
Zest of 1 Lemon
Garlic, 2 cloves, minced
2 Eggs, beaten lightly
Flour, 1 Cup
Salt + Pepper
Canola Oil, 1-2 Cups
Chicken Stock, 4-6 Cups
White Wine, ½ Cup
Buffalo Mozzarella Cheese, 8 oz.
Basil, 5-6 Large Leaves
Preheat Oven to 450 degrees
For the Sauce—
1. Combine tomatoes, (do not discard juices), butter and onion halves in a saucepan. Add a pinch of salt
2. Place over medium high heat and bring to a simmer. Cook, uncovered, for about 45 minutes. Stir occasionally. Mashing any large pieces of tomato remaining with a spoon.
3. Discard the onion before adding the sauce to your dish. Keep warm.
For the Rice—
1. Cook rice as directed in a sauce pan using chicken stock and 1/2 a cup of white wine instead of water (or use a rice cooker)
2. Once the rice is cooked, add ¼ a cup of parmesan, fluff with a fork and keep warm (on low or on ‘warm’ rice cooker setting).
For the Chicken–
1. Season chicken with salt and pepper.
2. On three separate large plates you will need– 1. Flour, 2. Egg Mixture: 2 Eggs, 2 Clove of Garlic, Minced, Lemon Zest, 3. Breadcrumb Mixture: Breadcrumbs + Parmesan cheese (1/4 Cup)
3. Dip one chicken cutlet, fully coating each side, first in the flour, then egg, and last, breadcrumb mixture. Transfer the chicken to a casserole dish. Repeat with remaining chicken. Press breadcrumbs on chicken, making sure it is fully coated.
4. Refrigerate chicken for about 15 min.
5. Heat 1-2 Cups of Canola oil in a large skillet on medium high heat until it begins to shimmer*. Cook the chicken until golden brown, about 3-4 min on each side.
1. In a casserole dish layer your cooked rice, and fried chicken. Top each chicken breast with 2-3 large basil leaves and a few thinly sliced pieces of fresh buffalo mozzarella.
2. Bake in oven until cheese is melted and chicken is cooked through, about 5 min.
3. Top with warm tomato sauce and ENJOY!
*Shimmer test: wet your hands with a little water and flick them above your pan. If the oil sizzles from the water that means it is ready to go!