Monday, January 28, 2013

Parmesan Chicken Sticks - Perfect For Super Bowl Sunday

Iiiiiitttttttt's Monday!  Again!  Hope your weekend was spectacular.  We spent ours at grandsons' (plural) basketball games on Saturday and helped our other daughter pack her house for their big move this week.  Have you ever packed to move with two little ones running around?  I have, and all the help you can wrangle is a major bonus.  Some to pack and some to chase children.  They are moving to a new house all on one level.  She is so excited.  No more flights of stairs to navigate with two little boys.   Talk about a workout.  Wow.

On Friday night, I felt ambitious and wanted to fix something different for dinner.  Don't you get tired of the same things all the time?  I sure do.  Well, that huge package of boneless, skinless chicken breasts  in the fridge looked like they were it whether they wanted to be or not.  I hunted around the net to see what I could find as far as recipes using chicken breasts.  One of the first places I always look is  Lots and lots of good recipes on there and Ina Garten, better known as the Barefoot Contessa, always has awesome recipes that are not hard, but always flavorful and delicious.  What did I spy, but a recipe for parmesan chicken sticks.  Sounded good to me!  I mean, who doesn't love chicken parmesan?   And, what to go with them?  Why my 3 cheese mac and cheese of course (made from scratch) and a recipe for zucchini cakes that I found on Pinterest a while back.  They are like potato pancakes made with zucchini and a tzatziki sauce to go with them.  Yum.  Yum.  Yum.

I put our youngest son to work grating zucchini while I prepared the parmesan chicken sticks.  They are really easy and oh my goodness delicious.  These would be perfect for Super Bowl serving!!  For Super Bowl you want some finger type food that guys will love and these certainly fit the bill.  Here is what you need:

1 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breasts (3 to 4 - I used 4 and had a mound of chicken sticks)
1 cup flour
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 extra large eggs
1 cup seasoned bread crumbs (I used Italian bread crumbs)
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
Unsalted butter
Good olive oil
Bamboo skewers 6-10 inches long, optional


Lay the chicken breasts on a cutting board and slice each diagonally into 4 or 5 large strips.  (The chicken breasts I had were very large so I got 6-7 strips per breast).  I also ended up doubling the breading recipe.

Combine the flour, salt, and pepper in a shallow bowl.  Beat the eggs with 1 TBSP of water in a second shallow bowl.  Combine the breadcrumbs and Parmesan in a third shallow bowl.  Dredge the chicken breasts on both sides in the flour mixture, then dip both sides into the egg mixture and roll in the bread-crumb mixture, pressing lightly to coat.

Heat 1 TBSP of butter and 1 TBSP of olive Oil in a large saute pan and cook the chicken sticks on medium low heat for about 3 minutes on each side, until just cooked through.  Don't crowd the pan.  (I used my non stick electric skillet so I could cook more at a time).  Add more butter and oil and cook the rest of the chicken sticks.  Serve each stick on a skewer if you want.  (We didn't bother, but could be good for the Super Bowl).

You can keep the chicken breasts warm for about 15 minutes on a sheet pan in a preheated 200 degree F oven until you finish all the chicken sticks.

We ate these with some Trader Joe's marinara sauce (warmed) for dipping.  Mm, mm, mm, mm, mmm.  Dan and Tyler declared these fantastic and we certainly will be making them again!  We had a huge plate of chicken sticks and enjoyed them for two more meals.

If you have children, I guarantee they will love these scrumptious pieces of chicken.  So will anyone at a Super Bowl gathering.  They were so tender and tasty we could not stop commenting on how delicious they were.  Tyler, who is somewhat of a foodie, TRULY liked them if you want a good testimonial from someone with rather discriminating taste.  Dan declared the meal better than most restaurant meals which made the effort more than worthwhile.

Thanks Ina for a great recipe!  Hope you all give it a try.

Everyday Donna

Things to Remember:

I predict that one of the teams will win the Super Bowl.  ; )

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