Crispy Chicken Parmesan over Pasta

I apologize for my deplorable January postings … in my defense, we’ve been a bit busy selling our house and moving. We’re set to move soon so hopefully I can get back in the kitchen asap! This recipe was inspired by an episode of Guy’s Big Bite – I think we have very similar palates because I tend to love his ideas.

While the breading and frying can be a bit time-consuming this is a pretty simple recipe.  This was the first time I’ve brined chicken.  Honestly, I’m not sure I could tell a difference but that could also be because there are so many bold flavors.  You could certainly skip the brine if you’re pressed for time. I served with our family-recipe Caesar salad (which I happen to need A LOT of work on).

  • 4 boneless, skinless, butterflied chicken breasts (*I asked the butcher to take a normal chicken breast and butterfly it – usually they can do this for you, basically it is cutting the breast in half but not to the edge, so it opens like a book)
  • 1/2 cup kosher salt (for brine)
  • 1/2 cup sugar (for brine)
  • Flour (at least 1.5 cups)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1.5 cups Italian bread crumbs
  • 1.5 cups plain Panko bread crumbs
  • Olive oil (enough for frying)
  • S/P
  • 1 pound fresh mozzarella, sliced (you could also get a container of small mozzarella balls if that is easier)
  • Your favorite pasta and pasta sauce
  • Fresh Parmesan and Parsley for garnish
  1. Place the chicken breasts in brine bags (as many flat fit in the bags) or double bag with freezer zip-locks (1 per bag).
  2. Lightly pound so they’re evenly thinned out but try not to puncture your bags. Rebag if necessary before brining.
  3. If you’re brining, combine the kosher salt and sugar in a pitcher w/ 1 quart pitcher. Mix and divide between the bags of chicken. Shake gently so each side of the chicken is covered. Let sit at room temp for about 30 minutes.
  4. Set up your dishes for breading – one with flour, one with bread crumbs and S/P, and one with the eggs and milk (whisked together).
  5. One by one, dredge the chicken into the flour, shake, into the egg mixture, and then into the bread crumbs. Press the bread crumbs into the chicken gently with your hand or a spatula.
  6. Let the breaded chicken sit while you heat about 1/4 inch of olive oil in a pan. Cook each piece on medium-high until golden brown & cooked through on each side, about 2-3 minutes per side.
  7. Let drain on papertowels.
  8. Preheat the broiler to low.
  9. Place the chicken on a pan and place mozzarella on top. Place under the broiler until the cheese is melted.
  10. In the meantime, cook your pasta and heat your sauce.
  11. Chop your parsley & grate the Parmesan if needed.
  12. To plate, put pasta/sauce on plate & place a piece of chicken on top. Garnish with more sauce, Parmesan, and parsley.