Sunday, January 16, 2011

Easy Parmesan Risotto and Parmesan Chicken

This is so much easier than it looks and sounds.  I love risotto, but I don't love to make it.  The constant adding liquid and whisking has kept it off my table for years.  When I got Ina Garten's latest cookbook, How Easy Is That?, I stumbled upon an EASY recipe for risotto.  You dump everything in the pot and let it do the work.  I made it with Parmesan chicken.

Parmesan Chicken (also by Ina Garten) is a favorite at my house.  It is also extremely easy.  So if you want a dinner that looks and tastes delicious, but doesn't take all night, this is your winner.  The chicken is super easy.  All you do is take however many chicken breasts you need for your family and pound them to 1/4 inch thick.  Be careful to do this evenly so that your chicken will cook evenly.  You are going to dip them into a flour/salt&pepper/grated Parmesan mixture, then into egg wash, then into Italian bread crumbs.  Heat a large skillet over medium-low heat and add 1 tablespoon of butter and 1 tablespoon of olive oil.  Once it is melted, place the coated chicken breasts into the skillet and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side.  Add more oil and butter and cook additional chicken breasts.  That's it! (recipe at the end of this post)

I cooked the Risotto in my Deep Covered Baker.  Use whatever casserole type dish that you have with a lid on it.  IT HAS TO HAVE A LID.

Give these a try and let me know what you think. 
Easy and delicious!!

Easy Parmesan "Risotto"
Ina Garten's "Barefoot Contessa: How Easy Is That?" cookbook

* 1.5 cups Arborio rice
* 5 cups simmering chicken stock, preferably homemade, divided
* 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
* 1/2 cup dry white wine
* 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, diced
* 2 teaspoons kosher salt
* 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
* 1 cup frozen peas

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the rice and 4 cups of the chicken stock in a Dutch oven, such as Le Creuset. Cover and bake for 45 minutes, until most of the liquid is absorbed and the rice is al dente. Remove from the oven, add the remaining cup of chicken stock, the Parmesan, wine, butter, salt and pepper, and stir vigorously for two to three minutes, until the rice is thick and creamy. Add the peas and stir until heated through. Serve hot.

Parmesan Chicken 

  • 4 to 6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 extra-large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 1/4 cups seasoned dry bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan, plus extra for serving
  • Unsalted butter
  • Good olive oil
Pound the chicken breasts until they are 1/4-inch thick. You can use either a meat mallet or a rolling pin.
Combine the flour, salt, and pepper on a dinner plate. On a second plate, beat the eggs with 1 tablespoon of water. On a third plate, combine the bread crumbs and 1/2 cup grated Parmesan. Coat the chicken breasts on both sides with the flour mixture, then dip both sides into the egg mixture and dredge both sides in the bread-crumb mixture, pressing lightly.

Heat 1 tablespoon of butter and 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large saute pan and cook 2 or 3 chicken breasts on medium-low heat for 2 to 3 minutes on each side, until cooked through. Add more butter and oil and cook the rest of the chicken breasts


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  2. I've seen that recipe and wondered if it really was as easy as Ina claimed. Nice to know it IS easy and good.