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Friday Recipe Exchange: Oven Baked Chicken

Chicken à la noir.

Chicken à la noir.

I thought we’d covered oven baked chicken before, but it turns out we have not. Since this is one of my favorite ways to make chicken, I was surprised. So that’s tonight’s theme. There are many different ways to go about making crispy baked chicken, I like Italian bread crumbs and panko for mine. Sometimes I soak the chicken in buttermilk for an hour and use that instead of egg to get the breadcrumbs to adhere. But if I’m in a hurry, it’s just the traditional recipe that I’ve posted below. And by traditional, I mean the one I grew up with, although my mom used rice crispies and cut up chicken pieces.

To change things up, you can add ingredients, like parmesan cheese, sesame seeds (there’s a recipe for that below), corn flakes or rice crispies. I saw a very interesting recipe recently that used toasted pecans, breadcrumbs and panko as the coating. I’m going to recipe test that one when I have a chance.

If you want something a little different, one of my favorites is Crispy Potato Chicken (recipe here).

Craving a Crispy and Spicy Chicken Sandwich?  Here’s a recipe that comes close to a famous fast food joint.

And for something completely different, how about Baked Chicken with Peaches? (recipe here)

If you’re looking to barbecue chicken that’s not all scorched on the outside and raw inside, either on the grill or in the oven, I have some simple tips here.

Grilled, baked, fried or barbecued, what’s your favorite style of chicken? Do you have one of those favorite childhood foods you just have to make once a week or so? Share some recipes in the comments.

On to tonight’s two featured recipes:

Oven Fried Chicken

  • 2 boneless chicken breasts
  • 4 bonelss chicken thighs
  • 1 cup Italian breadcrumbs
  • 1 1/2 cups Panko
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • ¼ cup water**
  • salt & pepper to taste (at least 1/8 tsp each)

large mouth bowl, large plate and baking sheet lined with foil or parchment

Wash and pat chicken dry. In a large bowl, add water, eggs, oil, salt and pepper and beat well. Mix together and spread Italian breadcrumbs and panko evenly on large plate. Take chicken pieces one at a time and dip in egg wash, coating completely, dredge  in bread crumbs until lightly coated on all sides. Place on baking sheet. Bake  at 375 degrees for 30 minutes with foil covering the chicken, uncover and cook additional 15 minutes.

If you want to punch up the coating, you can add additional dry herbs to the breadcrumb mixture, I usually add some extra garlic and onion powder, a touch of cayenne, a bit of dried basil and rosemary.

This next recipe is great when the kids want chicken fingers, or it can be used with breasts and thighs as well, but you’ll need to increase the portions of breadcrumbs and sesame seeds to equal 3 cups.

Sesame Chicken Fingers

  • 1/2 cup stone-ground mustard
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 3 tbsp limejuice
  • salt & pepper
  • ½ cup sesame seeds
  • 1 cup Italian breadcrumbs
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • ¼ cup water
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil or olive oil
  • 1 to 1 ½ lbs chicken tenders

baking sheet, greased or lined with parchment or foil

2 bowls and 1 plate

Mix mustard, honey & limejuice in bowl, set aside. On plate mix salt, pepper, breadcrumbs & sesame seeds. In second bowl, add egg, water & oil. Dip chicken in egg wash then dredge in breadcrumbs. Line on baking sheet, bake at 425° for 10 minutes, turn, and bake an additional 5 to 10 minutes, should be crispy on all sides. Serve with mustard dipping sauce, waffle fries and a fresh vegetable tray for a quick and easy dinner.

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Crispy (and spicy) Chicken Breast Sandwiches

The other day on another blog, someone mentioned making chicken patties. There were some questions about the recipe, so I went and took a look. It sounded great and I thought, I should make that. But when I went to make it, remembered it called for ground, cooked chicken and thought, eh, too much work. I prefer a chicken breast cutlet with a crisp, spicy crust, anyway. So I decided to play with ingredients to come  up with something that made me feel guilty eating it. All spicy and crispy. This what I came up with:

Crispy Chicken Breast Sandwiches

  • 4 large boneless-skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup dill pickle juice
  • 1 egg (if you’re going to bake, add 1 tbsp of olive oil to egg)
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup panko
  • 1 cup Italian bread crumbs
  • Olive oil

Spice Mix

  • 1 tsp of salt
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp dried marjoram
  • 2 tsp dried sage
  • 2 tsp dry basil
  • 2 tsp of celery seeds
  • 1 tsp of black pepper
  • 1/2 to 1 tsp cayenne powder
  • 2 tsp onion powder
  • 2 tsp of paprika

Sandwich Fixin’s

  • 8 crusty sesame sandwich rolls
  • Mayonnaise
  • Tomato slices
  • Lettuce
  • Dill pickle (or for extra spice, jalapenos – my choice)

skillet

Fillet breasts to make two thin fillets from each breast and then soak in pickle juice for 30 minutes. Transfer chicken to buttermilk and let marinate for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, mix together panko, bread crumbs and spice mix. Beat egg.

Remove chicken from buttermilk mixture, dip in egg and then dredge in breadcrumb mixture, coating well. Fry in skillet with 1-2 tbsp of oil, turning until golden brown on both sides. Or alternately, bake at 375 degrees for 20 to 30 minutes. (I covered it for the first 10-15 minutes to keep it moist, then uncovered to get it crispy).

Serve with sandwich fixin’s.

Cooked fillets can be frozen and reheated in the oven at 450 degrees until heated through.

Thursday Night Menu: Comfort Food-Italian Style

It’s cold and snowy. Again. Winter is dragging on too long, in my opinion. I decided I needed comfort food, and by comfort food, I mean I needed something only my mom makes. So I called my mom and asked her for her Chicken Cacciatore recipe, one of my favorite childhood dinners (what can I say, I’m half Italian – and don’t tell child services, but it was served with a nice wine for everyone, including the kids).  Cacciatore  is guaranteed to chase away the deepest winter blues.

On the board tonight:

  1. Chicken Cacciatore
  2. Angel Hair Pasta
  3. Oregano-Parmesan Zucchini
  4. Baguette
  5. Gelato

Chicken Cacciatore

Sauce:

  • ½ tbsp olive oil
  • ½ medium onion, chopped
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 2 tsp crushed garlic
  • 45 oz tomato sauce
  • 12 oz tomato paste
  • 14 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 2 tsp oregano, crushed
  • 2 tsp basil, crushed
  • ½ tsp crushed red pepper (opt)
  • 1 medium carrot, peeled & finely grated
  • fresh ground pepper

large saucepan or dutch oven

Heat oil in saucepan and sauté onion and green pepper until soft, add garlic and heat for 1 minute. Add remaining ingredients, bring to a low boil and reduce heat to low, cover and stir occasionally.

Chicken:

  • 1 cup flour or Italian bread crumbs
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 frying chicken, cut up*
  • oil for frying

large bowl and skillet

Mix together dry ingredients in bowl. Wash and lightly pat dry chicken pieces, don’t dry completely. I removed the skin because in this recipe it adds nothing to the flavor or texture of the dish. Dredge each piece in flour or breadcrumbs, coating thoroughly. Heat oil in skillet and fry each chicken piece until browned on all sides. Remove from skillet and place in sauce. Raise heat  under the sauce to medium, cover and let chicken finish cooking, about 30-45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Serve with angel hair or favorite pasta and garnish with parmesan.  And lots of napkins.

*The key to this dish is to use small, bone-in chicken pieces. Whichever are your favorites. Enough to feed 6 easily. Which is why I use a cut-up fryer, the pieces are generally smaller. If you use large breasts, cut them in half. They cook quicker at this size and don’t become rubbery, which can happen with larger pieces.

Oregano-Parmesan Zucchini

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 medium zucchini, sliced
  • ½ onion, diced
  • ½ tsp crushed garlic
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan
  • salt and pepper to taste

skillet

Heat oil in skillet; add zucchini, onions and garlic. Sauté until zucchini is tender and onions are golden. Add oregano, Parmesan, salt & pepper and toss well.

Gelato: I went with Double Chocolate – Chocolate Chip and garnished with chopped almonds.

Shopping List:

  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 green pepper
  • 1 carrot
  • 3 medium zucchini
  • 3-15 oz tomato sauce (or equivalent)
  • 2-6 oz tomato paste (or equivalent)
  • 14 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 cut-up frying chicken
  • 4 oz Parmesan
  • 16 oz angel hair pasta (or equivalent)
  • 1 baguette (try an herbed one if possible)
  • ½ gallon Gelato

Also: flour or Italian breadcrumbs, olive oil, oregano, basil, garlic powder, crushed garlic, salt and pepper

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