Yeah, Chicken Parm!
Nonni Laura in the Kitchen
In my last blog post, I introduced you to the one and only Nonni Laura who showed you (via this video) how to make a humongous pot of minestrone, Italian grandma-style. Yum yum!
I wanted to share another of our very favorite Nonni recipes: this time ooey, gooey chicken parmesan, a true Italian-American classic…. and a meal near the top of my kids’ all time “most requested” list. It’s pretty hard not to love that magical combination of rich tomato sauce, melty cheese, herbed breadcrumbs and juicy chicken.
This particular version of chicken parmesan is mostly Nonni’s recipe, but with a few added tweaks and shortcuts by me to make it a bit more doable for busy weeknights. [The recipe recently appeared in the “Fast and Furious Weeknight Cooking” column for the San Jose Mercury News.]
Hope you’ll give it a try…BTW the leftovers make killer sandwiches!
Get the recipe for Nonni’s Quick Chicken Parm.
Nonni hugs are the best!
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This super easy recipe is one that our kids can make by themselves in the kitchen. And easy in this case, doesn’t mean lacking in taste at all. It’s the perfect combination of French technique (“en papillote) and Asian ingredients. It’s kind of an origami project for the kids to wrap up the fish in foil or parchment. The drama of opening the packets table-side always impresses everyone. You can omit the chile paste if you want to, to make the dish more palatable to little taste buds. Happy weekend!
Check out the recipe on San Jose’s Mercury’s Quick Dinner Weeknight Cooking section……
This one’s in the running for summer’s most perfect bite. You can get quite creative and fancy with bruschetta, but sometimes simplicity rules. A slab of ciabatta layered with the best ricotta you can find (or make your own — it’s easy) and a simple salad of juicy farmers’ market tomatoes dressed liberally with balsamic vinegar, jewel green olive oil, freshly cracked pepper and flakey sea salt. We could eat this everyday and twice on Sunday.
Here’s something tasty to eat while you’re awaiting the return of luscious summer fruit. We love our apples, pears and oranges, but somehow they just don’t inspire the way those buckets of cherries and perfect ripe-tart-juicy nectarines do. But then again these spiced, wine-poached pears are pretty great. They’re tender and sweet, with hints of clove and cinnamon, and exotic, earthy aromas provided by a bit of leftover wine. Glossy and gorgeous, this is an old-fashioned kind of dessert, the kind your grandmother might have made — especially if she was Italian. In fact making these always gets my hubby thinking about his Nonni.
Here’s a genius trick I can take absolutely no credit for — make a big batch of caramelized onions and freeze them to use in all sorts of yummy things like this simple, yet amazing pasta dish. Continue reading
I have these popsicles to thank for my kids’ growing interest in chia seeds and their strange jelly-like properties.
When that old chocolate craving hits lately we’ve been diving into these cool dreamy-creamy chocolate-banana popsicles. I’ve always liked the idea of homemade popsicles, but somehow they’re always a bit icy and never quite get that luxurious consistency I’m after. Well we’ve done it! We’ve finally landed on what is, at least for my family, the ultimate popsicle! These get extra bonus points because the flavor reminds us of the frozen chocolate bananas you get at the county fair or at Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. Continue reading
Learning how to cook an Italian classic.
This is one of those recipes that is so easy it hardly even needs a recipe. It has a list of 3 ingredients (maybe four, but more on that later) and is just only slightly more complicated than boiling pasta. But despite it’s basic-ness Cacio e Pepe one of the most delicious and satisfying pasta dishes ever dreamed up. In fact, when my husband and I were in Rome this last summer we of course made it a point to eat as much great food as possible (no surprise there). Despite the many absolutely amazing meals we had, the one we returned to on our last night (and we were both in total agreement) was a bowl of Cacio e Pepe, a slow-roasted porchetta sandwich, a simple salad and a glass of wine from a little stand down by the Tevere which was set up as part of a summer festival along the river. Last meal in Rome? No contest. Okay maybe dining al fresco by the light of a full moon, bathed in the special magic of one of our favorite cities had something to do with it, but the food really was perfect. Continue reading
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In addition to being a lovely accompaniment to afternoon coffee this is a cake also has a long history. It dates back to the 16th century where it has been enjoyed by Santiago locals and pilgrims making their way to the Cathedral of Santiago Compostel (the burial place of St. James, the patron saint of Spain.). This recipe also happens to be gluten-free which comes in handy as well. Continue reading
We’re very excited to announce a new collaboration with Bay Area Parent. As all of you moms and dads in the area already know, it’s a super handy print and online resource for finding activities, classes, kid-friendly events, and even summer camps — not to mention lots of useful articles on a whole variety of parenting issues from “kids and cell phones” to “finding the perfect preschool”.
Each month we’ll be contributing our favorite easy, kid-friendly recipes for Bay Area Parent’s “Feeding Your Family” column. For our first article for the April issue we chose a light and fresh take on chicken piccata. Our version stays classic with the tangy flavors of lemon and capers, but we’ve ditched the cream to make it a lighter and more everyday recipe. Hands down this is one of our favorite dishes to make whenever that craving for zingy lemon hits…. and it’s a perfect meal to welcome spring, especially when you serve it alongside tender, bright green asparagus.
Click here for our “Light and Fresh Chicken Piccata” recipe on the Bay Area Parent website as well as a Q&A about how Simran and I got started together on this foodie adventure as well as some thoughts about cooking with and for kids. Stay tuned….Simran and I are already hard at work fine-tuning some great recipes for future issues!
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