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09/09/09 and quick parmesan chicken

Only 9 ingredients for Parmesan Chicken with Roasted Potatoes and Tomato-Pesto Sauce

Only 9 ingredients for Parmesan Chicken with Roasted Potatoes and Tomato-Pesto Sauce

Today’s date – 09/09/09, maybe not be as lucky as 07/07/07 was supposed to be, but it is cool just the same. So why not make dinner with only 9 ingredients tonight? We won’t be counting the true pantry staples of olive oil, salt, and pepper, or even the red pepper flakes, since you get a little packet of those delivered right to your front door every time you get delivery pizza! Subtract those out, and you’ve got a nine-ingredient dinner for a family of four. If you’re like me, you even have some of this already in the freezer, pantry, or fridge. So run into the grocery store on the way home – jump into the “Express 10 Item or Less” lane and you are ready to cook!

Parmesan Chicken with Roasted Potatoes
and Tomato-Pesto Sauce

2 pounds small Yukon Gold potatoes, peels left on and quartered
1 red bell pepper, cored and seeded, cut into thin strips
1 medium red onion, peeled and thinly sliced
4 large cloves garlic, peeled and lightly mashed
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups shredded Parmesan cheese, nice long shredded pieces, not grated
1 egg white, lightly beaten in a flat soup-style bowl
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
28-ounces can of whole or crushed Roma tomatoes
1/2 cup prepared pesto sauce

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees.  Cover a large baking sheet with aluminum foil.

Place potatoes, pepper strips, onion slices, and mashed garlic on foil, sprinkle with red pepper flakes, and drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, toss to coat. Season well with salt and pepper. Place baking sheet in the oven and roast for 15 minutes, remove from oven and toss so the potatoes will cook evenly, return to oven and cook about 9 minutes more or until potatoes are just tender. Keep warm.

While vegetables are in the oven, prepare the chicken. Place the Parmesan cheese on a dinner plate, and set the flat bowl with the beaten egg white next to it. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Season the chicken breasts with salt and freshly ground black pepper, coat each with the egg white letting excess drip off before pressing the breasts firmly into the cheese, coating both sides heavily with Parmesan. Turn the stove down to medium heat, you don’t want the heat too high or the Parmesan will burn before the chicken can cook through. Add 1 tablespoon olive oil to the hot pan. Place coated chicken in the pan, without crowding- leaving space between each breast, and cook for 9 minutes on one side. Add the last tablespoon of olive oil to the pan, if necessary, turn the breasts over with a metal spatula (pancake turner) and cook another 7 to 9 minutes on the other side until the cheese is nicely browned and the chicken is cooked through.

nicely browned parmesan chicken

nicely browned parmesan chicken

While chicken cooks pour tomatoes into a medium saucepan (if tomatoes are whole, use a potato masher to crush) heat through, seasoning with salt and pepper and a dash of red pepper flakes, and simmer sauce until chicken is done. Just before serving, remove tomato sauce from heat and fold in the pesto sauce. Folding in at the last minute, off the heat, helps keep the pesto green.

Place one chicken breast on each plate and top with sauce, spoon vegetables on the side.  And if you haven’t cooked the chicken on too high a heat, you’ll have some pan juices left after removing the breasts; pour those over the potatoes before serving.

Serves 4

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1 Marissa { 09.09.09 at 3:54 PM }

I’m making this one. It seems and easy and will feed all 5 of us, right?

2 Linda Hopkins { 09.09.09 at 4:39 PM }

Sure, you can do it w/just 4 breasts and slice them on a diagonal before dividing them between 5 plates, just be sure to let the chicken rest for 3 or 4 minutes before slicing. If you want you can use 5 breasts, the cheese should easily spread that far. And maybe add a tablespoon of water to the beaten egg white to make it go a little farther.

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