Monday, June 18, 2007

Good Old Fashioned Comfort Food

Last week, I didn't cook once. Blame work, blame laziness, blame the government, whichever you want. I vowed that this week would be different. Tonight, we were in the mood for some comfort food. So, we decided on Rachael Ray's Parmigiano & Herb Chicken Tenders with some Mac & Cheese. I forgot to take a picture, so here is the one I downloaded from

We didn't follow the recipe exactly, as usual. I've indicated our changes. I think you should make them too.

Parmigiano & Herb Chicken Tenders (, slightly modified)

Olive oil, for frying (we used peanut oil)
1 1/2 pounds chicken breast tenders
Salt and pepper
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 large eggs, beaten with 1/4 cup water

2 cups Italian style bread crumbs (we used regular)
1 cup shredded Parmesan
6 sprigs or stems fresh thyme leaves, stripped and chopped, 2 to 3 tablespoons
6 sprigs fresh rosemary leaves, finely chopped, 3 tablespoons
2 handfuls chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped (I used garlic powder - the thought of deep fried garlic cloves seemed a little wrong).

Heat 1/2-inch oil in a large nonstick skillet or frying pan over medium to medium high heat. (We used our deep fryer, heated to about 370 degrees).

Place flour in a shallow dish. Beat eggs with water in a second dish along side the flour. In a third dish, combine the breading ingredients. Coat chicken in flour, then egg, then bread and cheese mixture. To keep your hands clean, ask for plastic gloves at the butcher counter. To ease your clean up, try using disposable tin pie tins for the flour, egg and bread crumbs.

Cook chicken until deeply golden on each side, 3 to 4 minutes. (Because of the deep fryer, we just fried them for 5 minutes total). Transfer to cookie sheet in preheated oven and finish off for another 5 minutes cooking time. Cook chicken 5 or 6 tenders at a time in a single layer, adding additional oil if necessary. If the chicken begins to brown too quickly lower heat slightly. (We just skipped this, as the tenders didn't need additional cooking time). Serve with your choice of dipping sauce.

As I said before, I made some homemade mac & cheese to go along with the tenders. I didn't follow a recipe, I just sort of made it up as I went along. So, this is my best guess of what I did.

Homemade Mac & Cheese
2 cups uncooked elbow macaroni
1/2 cup milk
1 cup cottage cheese (yes, cottage cheese)
4 oz Velveeta cheese
freshly ground pepper

Boil noodles to al dente. Set aside.

In food processor, mix together cottage cheese, pepper, & milk. Add that to the noodle pot; mix in noodles. Cube the Velveeta, and stir in until melted.

So now, I'm sitting on my couch writing this, feeling full & happy. Life is good.

1 comment:

Gillian said...

These look amazing :) I'll definitely have to try them sometime soon! Maybe next week - I need some recipe inspirations!

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