- February 2019
- Serves 4
- Hands-on time 35 min, simmering time 40 min
Recreate a classic Italian-American recipe with our chicken parmigiana. Crunchy escalopes, tomato sauce and melted cheese… what’s not to love?
- 32.1g (14.3g saturated)
- 93.3g (9.6g sugars)
- 4 x 175g free-range boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 50g plain flour
- 2 large free-range eggs
- 125g panko breadcrumbs
- 45g parmesan, finely grated
- 2 tbsp finely chopped fresh flatleaf parsley
- 50g butter
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 350g dried spaghetti or linguine
- 2 x 125g packets buffalo mozzarella, drained and sliced
For the marinara sauce
- 3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- 4 garlic cloves, crushed
- 2 x 400g tins chopped tomatoes
- Good handful fresh basil leaves, shredded, plus extra to garnish
- For the marinara sauce, put the olive oil and crushed garlic in a medium pan over a medium heat. As soon as the garlic begins to sizzle and start to change colour (don’t let it brown), add the chopped tomatoes, bring to the boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring every now and then, until reduced and thickened. Season to taste, then keep hot.
- Meanwhile, make the chicken escalopes. Slice the chicken breasts in half horizontally. Put the pieces on a chopping board between 2 sheets of cling film and pound with a rolling pin until they’re all about 1cm thick.
- Put the flour in a shallow dish with a pinch of salt and some freshly ground black pepper, beat the eggs in a second shallow dish, then mix the breadcrumbs, cheese, chopped parsley and a good pinch of salt in a third shallow dish.
- Bring a large pan of well salted water to the boil. Gently heat the butter in a small pan until melted. Pour off the clear butter into a ramekin and discard any milky solids left in the bottom of the pan (see tip).
- Coat 4 of the chicken escalopes in flour, shake off the excess, then dip in the beaten egg and finally the breadcrumbs, making sure they’re completely coated on both sides.
- Heat the oven to 220°C/200°C fan/gas 7. Set a large non-stick frying pan over a medium-high heat. Heat 2 tbsp of the clarified butter (see tip) and 2 tbsp of the olive oil. When hot, add the escalopes and cook for 2½ minutes on each side until golden. Drain briefly on kitchen paper, then transfer to a large wire rack set in or over a large roasting tin. Repeat with the remaining butter, oil and 4 escalopes.
- Drop the pasta into the boiling water and cook for 10 minutes or until al dente (according to the packet instructions). Lay the slices of mozzarella on top of the chicken escalopes. When the pasta has been cooking for 5 minutes, slide the roasting tin and chicken into the hot oven and cook for 5 minutes until the mozzarella has just melted.
- Drain the pasta well and pile onto 4 warmed plates. Stir the shredded basil into the marinara sauce, spoon it over the pasta and top with the chicken escalopes. Sprinkle with a few fresh basil leaves and serve.
If you have some ghee in the kitchen, skip step 4 and use it instead of the clarified butter to fry the chicken (step 6).
If you prefer, cook just 2 chicken breasts and serve 1 escalope per person.
Make the tomato sauce up to 3 days ahead, cool, then cover and store in the fridge.
Use extra-virgin olive oil for the sauce and simmer it gently, stirring regularly so the sauce doesn’t catch on the base of the pan. Clarifying the butter, then mixing it with a little olive oil will make it easier to fry the chicken escalopes without burning the butter.
Add the basil to the sauce just before serving to preserve its fresh flavour.
Coat and fry the chicken escalopes at the last minute and only bake them long enough to just melt the mozzarella. Take care not to overcook the chicken or
brown the cheese.
Ripe and fruity (but not oaky) whites suit this. Go for a bright Sicilian fiano or a French viognier.
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