I have been defrosting some chicken breasts since yesterday. I have had a few thoughts as to how I was going to cook them. In the middle of a very tough and interesting trampoline cardio class, I had an idea. Maybe it was because I was jumping my ass off while listening and watching videos with Beyonce, Fergie, Bruno Mars, and a bunch of other hot half naked dancers and singers, but I was thinking of making something healthy. I thought of poaching my chicken breasts in a tomato sauce and adding them on some whole what pasta.
When I asked my husband if he had any suggestions or ideas for the chicken breast, he said, “I don’t care; just don’t over cook it.” Duh! Like any of us ever tries to over cook anything! So I went with the idea of poaching in a yummy sauce and adding it to healthy noodles. My husband had to go out, so I sent him to the store with a list. He called me and asked what kind of noodle I wanted…he seemed a bit annoyed at the fact that we were going to have pasta. Then, I was all like, “Don’t say you don’t care what we have for dinner and then get all pissed that I am making something you might not want. Not the way this works…”
So he came home with all my ingredients, and I was all set to make my healthy dinner. I began making my sauce. I opened the olives…he bought whole ones. Well, I didn’t really specify, so I just sliced them and put them in the sauce. I asked the girls if they wanted some olives. Him- “There are olives in the sauce?” Me- “Uh, yeah, you bought them…I just had to slice them, because you got the whole ones; no biggie. Slicing olives is actually very relaxing.”
Then he had a stroke of genius. FINALLY!!! Him- “Have you cooked the chicken yet?” Me- “No…why?”
Him- “How about making chicken parm sandwiches?” Me- “Brilliant idea! See, this is what I mean!!! You have to tell me!!! Otherwise I am meal planning my ass off without you and then you aren’t allowed to complain!”
Speak up, people! Otherwise you will end up with poached chicken instead of this. Although, I am sure my poached chicken in tomato sauce would have been amazing!
Chicken Parmesan Sandwich
1 onion, chopped
3 cloves of garlic, crushed and minced
1 container of mushrooms, sliced or chopped
3 tablespoons of tomato paste
1 small can of olives, chopped- save half the juice
3 tablespoons Worcestershire
1/2 cup red wine (or chicken stock)
1 large can crushed tomatoes
1 small can diced tomatoes
2 tablespoons dried Italian Seasoning
1 heaping tablespoon of sugar
good palm full of salt and pepper- 2/3 salt, 1/3 pepper- eyeball, but taste along the way to see if it needs more
Heat a large dutch oven/pot and add a few turns of the pan with olive oil and a pat of butter.
Add the onion and cook down for about 5 minutes. Add your garlic and mushrooms and cook down 5 more minutes.
Add the tomato paste. Stir and cook for about 2 minutes. Then add your olives with the juice.
Add the Worcestershire and wine. Mix well and cook down for about 8 minutes. Then add your tomatoes.
Mix well and add your sugar and seasonings. The sugar, Worcestershire, and wine balance out the acidity of the tomatoes and add a richness to the sauce. Cook as long as you can. Add more salt and pepper if needed.
3-4 chicken breasts- boneless, skinless
1/4 cup heavy cream- could use half-and-half or buttermilk
3 tbs olive oil
8 oz mozzarella cheese
1 cup Italian bread crumbs with 2 tbs grated Parmesan cheese, 1/2 tsp salt, and 1/4 tsp pepper
Pound the chicken breast between plastic wrap/wax paper with a mallet. It should be about 1/4 inch thick. It helps to have cute sous chefs…
Preheat oven to 350.
Pour cream in a small/medium bowl. Mix the breadcrumb ingredients and place on a large plate or platter.
Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add 1 1/2 tbs of the olive oil. Dip the chicken in the heavy cream on both sides well and tap against the bowl to get rid of excess. Dredge well in the breadcrumbs. Repeat for remaining chicken breasts.
Brown the chicken breasts in a cast iron skillet. I had 3 large breasts, so I used one large and one medium pan. Do not overcrowd the pan. If you need to do more than one batch, do it. Remove the chicken to a plate with paper towels to absorb some of the oil.
Put the chicken back in the oven on a lined pan and cook for another 5 minutes or until cooked through. Take out and let rest. Slice your mozzarella and cut your loaf of bread in 3 pieces and slice through the middle.
Slice your chicken in to strips to place on your sandwich. There should be no pink! If so, place back in the oven for another 5 minutes or so.
Preheat broiler to high. Add sauce, chicken, more sauce, and the cheese to your bread. Broil for approximately 5 minutes (about 6-inches from flame or heat element), or until cheese is melted, bubbly and begins to brown.