We’ve moved house and it’ll probably come as no surprise to those who know me and those who just read the blog, that our decision was largely influenced by the potential for a kitchen upgrade – and boy did we get lucky! Our shiny new place has a lovely spacious kitchen with plentiful worktops and cupboards, a big dishwasher and my personal favourite, doors out into the garden – you can’t beat that natural light for food pics 🙂
Since we unpacked properly (on Saturday, a full week after getting the keys.. oops!), I’ve been flexing my cooking and baking muscles to the max and L.O.V.I.N.G every minute of it. No more stingy surfaces, balancing bowls on the hob while four and a half pans are frothing or keeping the knives loose in the same drawer as the glassware (that’s an exaggeration, but you get the idea!)
Already I’ve made mushroom carbonara, a summer take on roast dinner, chocolate fudge brownie ice cream (with homemade brownies, obv) and this chicken parmigiana, as requested by my own personal, tired and hungry bed-builder and boyfriend. When he said he was craving chicken parm, I figured we wouldn’t have all the stuff but you know what, it is – or at least can be – pretty darn simple. My recipe uses six core ingredients and Parmesan instead of mozzarella – you’re just more likely to have a tub of the powdery stuff in aren’t ya?
Salt & pepper
2 chicken breasts
50g Parmesan, plus more to serve
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 red chilli, if you’ve got it
1 tin chopped tomatoes
1/2 tsp oregano
100g fresh tagliatelle (dry is fine, just adjust your timings)
Place your chicken breasts between two pieces of cling film, baking parchment or tin foil and bash with a rolling pin repeatedly until they’ve doubled in size and halved in thickness. This means they’ll cook quicker and stay nice and moist.
Next, crack the egg into a large bowl and mix, and pour the breadcrumbs – I make my own by blitzing up old sourdough, but Panko works just as well – mixed with the Parmesan into another large bowl.
Drag the chicken through the egg, tap off the excess and then drop into the breadcrumb mixture. Wiggle it around, flip it over and make sure it’s completely covered.
Set aside while you make the tomato sauce. Finely chop the chilli, grate the garlic and cook in a generous lug of olive oil for five minutes. Then, pour in the chopped tomatoes and a splash of water, plus the oregano and sugar and stir. Let it reduce a bit on a high heat and then keep it at a medium.
Bring a pan of salted water to the boil.
Pour a generous glug of rapeseed oil into a pan big enough for both chicken breasts and set to a high heat. When it starts to spit, turn it down a notch and add the chicken. I aim for five minutes each side but this will depend on the size of the chicken and you should definitely cut into it afterwards to check it’s cooked all the way through and the juices run clear.
Drop the fresh pasta into the water, cook for 3-4 minutes and then plate up. Pop the chicken on top, smother with tomato sauce and then finish with more Parmesan and black pepper. Salad is an optional extra but let’s face it, no-one’s interested.