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Jodi’s Kickin’ Italian Chicken

O.k., so I promised a great main dish to go with my favorite side, right? Well…here’s a chicken recipe so good, that I finally have to call a halt to the boys’ extra helpings. If you like your chicken with a little bit of crunch, then you’ll love this one. Bear in mind that I’m cooking to feed a small army, so feel free to halve this one if you’re cooking for 2-4. Or make the full recipe and use it for a slightly different dish the following night.*

– 2 lbs. chicken cutlets (can also use turkey cutlets — these are sliced much thinner than breasts and can be cooked quickly)

– 1 pkg. Panko Breadcrumbs with Italian Seasoning

– 6 oz. tub shredded parmesan (can also use a blend of Italian cheeses like Fontina, Asiago, Parmesan)

– 4 eggs

– 1 c. all-purpose flour

– salt

– pepper

– butter

– olive oil

On your counter — preferably right by your cooktop — line up three shallow dishes. In the first place the flour, seasoned with 1 T. pepper and 1 t. salt. In the second crack and beat the eggs. In the third, combine the breadcrumbs with the cheese. If possible line it up where you have chicken, flour, egg, breadcrumbs, frying pan. It will cut down on the cleanup later, trust me.

One hand is Wet and one is Dry. Using the hand designated for wet, pick up the raw chicken cutlet and drop it in the flour. Use your dry hand to flip the chicken and shake off the excess flour, then drop the floured cutlet it in the egg. Back to wet hand to pluck it from the egg and drop it in the breadcrumb/cheese mixture. Dry hand presses and pats the coating on, then takes the coated cutlet to the frying pan.

Your pan should be pre-heated over Medium to Medium High heat. To the hot pan add 2 T. olive oil and 1 T. butter. Give it 30 seconds to heat up, then carefully place your cutlets in the pan. You must be able to cook the cutlet approximately 3-4 minutes each side without burning the coating, so drop the heat if necessary. Work in batches of 3-4. Crowding makes for lousy browning, so make sure they have a little room in between. Remove to a cooling rack placed over a jellyroll pan (to catch any drippings) and place in a warm oven while you work on the remaining cutlets.┬áServe with my favorite side dish (S.T.O.P) and you’ve got a really easy, really great dinner on your hands.

*If you’ve made the whole batch and only need half, save the rest for the following night and serve over pasta with a nice red sauce. I recommend this one unless you want to use bottled. And there ain’t no shame in that. Easy Peasy wins every time.

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