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Classic Chicken Parmesan

Serves 4

Traditional chicken parmesan, an Italian-American dish, takes some time to prepare but is very easy and so good. To save time, you can use your favorite store-bought marinara sauce. Use mozzarella cheese for a mild flavor, or try provolone for a sharper taste. For a quick version that is even easier, healthier and possibly more typical of Italian cooking in the mother country, try my Light and Easy Chicken Parmesan, which is in the similar and related recipes.


   Sauce    Chicken

To make the sauce, heat the olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onions and sauté until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté another minute. Add the tomatoes, tomato sauce, wine and seasonings. Stir well. Partially cover and simmer over low heat until slightly thickened, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat until use.

Meanwhile, prepare the chicken. Preheat oven to 375° F. If desired, the breasts can be pounded to equal thickness but it is not necessary. Dip each breast first in the flour, then the egg wash, then the breadcrumbs. Shake off excess and set aside. Heat about 1/4 cup olive oil in a large fry pan over medium-high heat. Add the chicken breasts and brown on both sides, about 3 minutes per side.

Lightly spray a 13x9x2-inch baking dish. Place just enough of the sauce in the baking dish to cover the bottom, about 1/2 cup. Place the chicken breasts in a single layer. Spread the tops with a little sauce. Place a thin layer of the mozzarella or provolone cheese on top of each breast, then spread with little more sauce. Sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese. Place in the oven and bake until the chicken is cooked, about 20 minutes depending on the thickness. Place on individual serving dishes and pass the sauce separately. Extra sauce can be spooned on a pasta side dish.