Tuesday, December 04, 2012

breaded chicken breasts

This chicken is easy as pie. Except it's not pie, because that's chicken pot pie and that's a pretty marvelous idea in and of itself. Once the initial breading is done all that's required is chucking the chicken in the oven and coming back in 40 minutes to make sure it's done and nothing burned down. Even with the extra steps of breading, it's weeknight meal chicken, the sort of chicken I like to make when I want to throw something on quick, pull my vegetables from the freezer, grab some dinner rolls for carbage and go vacuum and do laundry while things cook.

The breading does some magic here, keeping the chicken juicy and moist all the way through. It's like home made Shake and Bake. If you want to work some real magic and you have an extra fifteen minutes you could even crisp things up in a frying pan with some oil to get the crust nice and golden all the way over before putting it in the oven. Or make your own breadcrumbs, or use crushed nuts or cornflakes or something for the crumb coating. There are plenty of ways to make this delicious, but the fact is it doesn't need much help.

Mostly, this is just chicken for those nights where you have chicken that you don't really feel inspired to cook but is going to go bad if you don't do something. So do this, because I promise you this will be delicious.

Ingredients
  • 4 bone in chicken breasts (I happened to have skinless, but this works with skin on)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp Italian seasoning
    • alternately: 1/2 tsp each thyme, oregeno, margoram, rosemary and basil
    • alternately: buy Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350*.
  2. Mix your breadcrumbs with the Italian seasoning.
  3. Set up a dreding station. On one plate spread out your flour, lightly beat your eggs into a bowl or shallow baking dish, spread out your breadcrumbs in a third dish.
  4. Lightly flour your first chicken breast, ensuring it is covered on all sides. If possible, try to only use your right hand for this.
    • There's a method to the one handed madness. Your're trying to keep your right hand "dry" (for chicken, flour and breadcrumbs) and your left hand "wet" (for eggs) so that you don't have to wash your hands between every step (eggy hands don't mix well with either flour or breadcrumsb). You can also get around this by using forks or by just not caring. Either way, still make sure you wash your hands as often as necessary for sanitation reasons.
  5. Move the chicken to the egg dish, turning until it is coated with egg. Try to keep this entirely with your left hand.
  6. Move the chicken into the breadcrumb mixture, and coat with breadcrumbs. Use your right hand for this.
  7. Transfer the breaded chicken to a baking dish. Repeat steps 4-7 with your remaining breasts.
  8. Roast the chicken for about 40 minutes, or until an internal thermometer reads 165*F. The breadcrumb coating will start to brown around the edges and be a light golden colour across the top.
  9. Let rest for five to ten minutes before serving.

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