My sister, Liz, and I enjoy spending time in the kitchen together, whether we are at home in Delaware, visiting one another at our apartments in Seattle or San Diego, or simply connecting by phone and FaceTime. We like to compare notes on recipes and reminisce about our childhood favorites that we could recreate sometime. Liz also recently introduced me to Daphne Oz’s cookbook, “The Happy Cook”, and we followed her banana bread recipe together on my first day in San Diego.
After the rainiest Seattle October on record, it was luxurious to step out of the airport in San Diego and shed a couple layers. Even better was getting picked up by Liz and Jay and being greeted by their dog Gracie (she remembered me!). While in San Diego, we enjoyed meals out and a special dinner with Robin and Maria, but we made sure to make time to cook dinner together. We used a recipe from SkinnyTaste as inspiration for our chicken parmesan prep, and consulted “Cook Yourself Thin” for the roasted vegetable steps (you can find that recipe on Food.com as well).
Baked Chicken Parmesan – serves 4 to 6
I like using thin-sliced chicken breasts for this meal because that can increase your surface area for breading, sauce and cheese. You can buy thin-sliced chicken breasts or slice them in half carefully at home. When Liz and I made this meal, we found out that we accidentally had vegan cheese, which did not melt readily but still tasted great. At home, I replicated the recipe with shredded mozzarella on top. I have also started using foil to line the baking sheet for this recipe, because the topping and cheese tend to adhere to your baking sheet otherwise!
You will need:
- cooking spray
- 2 T butter
- 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts (thin-sliced)
- 3/4 C breadcrumbs (preferably Italian breadcrumbs)
- 1/4 C shredded parmesan cheese
- 1 C marinara or other pasta sauce of choice
- 3/4 C shredded mozzarella
- Preheat your oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking sheet with foil. Spray sheet lightly with cooking spray.
- Melt butter in the microwave for about 30-60 seconds.
- Combine breadcrumbs and parmesan in a large bowl.
- Brush both sides of the chicken breast with butter and dip in the breadcrumb and parmesan mixture, generously coating each sides. Repeat with remaining chicken.
- Bake for 20 minutes for thin-sliced chicken breasts, or 25 minutes for thicker pieces.
- Remove from the oven and flip chicken breasts with tongs. Top each piece with a spoonful or marinara and a sprinkling of mozzarella cheese. Bake for another 5 minutes.
Roasted Root Vegetables – serves 4 to 6
The original recipe calls for these veggies to roast for 30-35 minutes at 375 degrees Fahrenheit. If you make these with your chicken parmesan, keep an eye on the vegetables and check and stir them after 20-25 minutes.
You will need:
- 3 large carrots, peeled and sliced
- 1 bunch of asparagus, cut into 2-3 inch pieces
- 2 yukon gold potatoes, sliced
- 1 t parsley, chopped
- 1 t dried chives
- 1-2 T olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- Line a baking sheet with foil.
- Combine sliced vegetables in a large mixing bowl.
- Drizzle 1-2 T olive oil over top and add salt and pepper and dried spices.
- Spread vegetables out on baking sheet in an even layer without too much overlap.
- Roast for 20 minutes and then shuffle the vegetables around on your baking sheet. You may need to roast for an additional 5 to 10 minutes; check potatoes for tenderness and then bake an additional minute or two for crispy potato skins.
Diva, Mommy. “Turkey Mini-Meatloaves With Roasted Root Veggies Recipe – Food.com.” Recipe – Food.com. N.p., 2009. Web. 01 Dec. 2016. (online resource for roasted root veggies)
Homolka, Gina. “Baked Chicken Parmesan | Skinnytaste.” Skinnytaste. N.p., 12 Sept. 2012. Web. 01 Dec. 2016.
Lifetime Television. Cook Yourself Thin: Skinny Meals You Can Make in Minutes. New York: Hyperion, 2009. Print. (print resource for roasted root veggies)