Sunday, August 28, 2011
Tonight for dinner it was just me and Brian. It was a nice, quiet evening, but this rarely happens on Sunday nights. We usually head up to his parents house or have dinner with my sisters. Today, however, everyone was out of town. We should have invited some friends over for dinner, but with me headed back to school tomorrow, a low key evening was just what I wanted. To make our laid back evening even better I decided to do a slow cooker meal that was easy to prepare, easy to serve and super easy to clean up. I decided to do a chicken parmesan and sauce in the slow cooker. My mom stopped by this morning on her way out of town and I told her of my plan and she told me she did the same thing just a few weeks ago and the result was amazing. I took some tips from her and was very pleased with how it turned out.
I've written the recipe below, but here's a brief run down of what I did and what I would change for next time. I started with a little olive oil in the bottom of the slow cooker and added chicken breasts that I dipped in egg and then in plain bread crumbs mixed with Italian seasoning. I put mozzarella cheese on top of the chicken then added my tomatoes, sauteed onions and garlic, parsley and basil. Lets talk about the chicken. It was super tender and juicy, but of course the breading wasn't crispy at all, so while it did stay on the chicken and added some flavor this could definitely be skipped. Also, adding the cheese on top of the chicken just got mixed up in the sauce and I think would be better added at the end when serving. I left my stewed tomatoes pretty chunky, but if you prefer you could cut them or use a blending method to make them smaller. I used fresh chicken breasts so I could bread them, but another way to do this faster, if skipping the breading, would be to use frozen chicken breasts.
That's about it, Brian said this was for sure a make again, and it was definitely easy enough. Too bad I didn't have any family in town to partake with us. You missed out! (And going along with not turning on my oven I bought Sprinkles cupcakes for dessert! The key lime one is to die for!)
Slow Cooker Chicken Parmesan
Chicken breasts -as many as you need
plain bread crumbs mixed with Italian seasoning (If breading chicken)
1 egg, well beaten
2 cans stewed tomatoes
2 cans stewed tomatoes, Italian style
1 can diced tomatoes with peppers and onions (or Italian, not Mexican!)
1 yellow onion diced and sauteed
4 cloves of garlic, diced and sauteed with onion
2 Tablespoons parsley
2 Tablespoons basil
1 box thin spaghetti
Drizzle olive oil over bottom of slow cooker. If breading chicken, thaw and using two different bowls dip chicken first in beaten egg and then in plain bread crumbs. Place on bottom of slow cooker. Open all cans of tomatoes and pour on top of chicken. Add onions and garlic, parsley and basil. Stir gently.
Cook time: on high 3-4 hours, on low 6-7. (More cooking time may be required if using frozen chicken.)
Serve chicken and sauce over spaghetti (or pasta of your choice).