I have a charm on my keychain that says “Italian at Heart.” Even though I am mostly a Northern European mutt, I pretend to have some degree of Italy in my blood. The fact that it’s the only language that I can pronounce and I could live anywhere on the boot should count for something, right? Lucky for me, Elliott is part Italian so keychain or not, he brings some authentic flair to our kitchen.
Whenever we’re looking for a quick meal with bold flavors, we tend to go Italian. Recently we made homemade marinara and thought the leftovers would be great on either eggplant parmesan or chicken parmesan. With such a decision threatening to slow us down, we decided the best option was to go for both! In general, Elliott likes to use panko any time we pan-fry, so we used a tempura recipe here instead of one using traditional Italian breadcrumbs. Also, if you use only olive oil in your pan it isn’t SO bad for you 😉
2 chicken breast cutlets, sliced thin
1 eggplant, sliced into 1″ disks
Marinara, homemade or store-bought
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
1 cup Panko bread crumbs
Spice mix (salt, pepper, oregano)
1/2 cup flour
1/2 tbsp. corn starch
3/4 cup seltzer water
pinch of salt and pepper
In one bowl, mix the grated parmesan with the breadcrumbs and spices. In another bowl mix the flour, corn starch, and soda water until evenly combined. Start with the eggplant pieces first to avoid cross-contamination issues with the raw chicken. Dredge the pieces in the liquid and shake off the excess. Follow with the panko mixture, evenly coating all sides. Drop into a hot cast iron skillet and cook until golden. Set aside on a sheet pan and start on the chicken, following the same method. When all the pieces are cooked, top with the marinara.
For an unusual take on the caprese salad, add cucumber and prosciutto! Buon appetito!