Thursday, March 24, 2011

Chicken Milanese

This recipe is just a fancy name for the breaded chicken cutlets that I grew up on. We had this dish at least once a week. I added grated Parmesan to Mama's recipe though. It is a delicious meal that has become part of my go-to list in the Zolli-Vigeant household. Oddly enough, I would probably not order this dish in a restaurant, regardless of how good it is, because it is THAT simple to make! But if my Mom said she was making this for dinner, I would be sportin' a pretty big grin on my face.

This version of a chicken cutlet recipe hails from Milan, Italy - a place I'd love to go - purely for food indulgence! The crunchy outside coating of this chicken, along with a little tang of Parmesan cheese, made me a happy camper last night around dinnertime.

1 cup flour (optional)
1 egg beaten with 1 tbsp of water
1 1/2 cups panko breadcrumbs
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
4 small chicken breasts (pounded and flattened)
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Olive or vegetable oil

Set up your breading station on the counter with 3 bowls or wide plates - I use pie plates.  Fill one with flour (if using), one with the beaten egg and one with the panko/grated cheese.  Since this recipe requires so little ingredients, it is important to use quality items such as a fresh block of Parmesan cheese grated yourself.  This combines with the Panko to create that lovely crust.  Feel free to substitute regular breadcrumbs instead of the Panko, but Panko crumbs are bigger and therefore give you the crust you want.  Typically I season the chicken with salt and pepper as well as the egg mixture for added flavor.  Make sure you have a clean plate ready to put your breaded chicken on once it goes through the rotation.  First flour, then egg, then breading - make sure to pat the panko/grated cheese mixture into the chicken good!

Now it is time to do the frying!  You can either use a large saute pan or a grill pan for this.  Pour your oil into either pan you choose until it goes up about a quarter of an inch up the side and let it come up to medium-high heat.  Make sure your oil is hot before putting any chicken in the pan or else it will just soak up the oil - not good.  Cook the chicken until it turns golden brown (lower the heat if it gets too brown too quickly).  Don't try to fit all four pieces of chicken in the pan at once, do it in two batches.  It will steam rather than brown if it is too crowded in the pan.  The cooking process takes about 5 minutes on the first side and 4 minutes on the second.

Drain the oil off the chicken by laying it on paper towels once done.  Prepare your other side dishes and you are ready to eat! I served mine this time around with angel hair pasta and steamed carrots.  It's a great meal to make during the week - I hope you give it a try - Tutti Mangia!


Melissa said...

aw my mom made this all the time too. what a coincidence.

Karen said...

Sounds like the perfect comfort food dish to me! Yum!

A Busy Nest said...

This looks simple and delicious!

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