Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Garlic Cheddar Chicken

Contrary to the beliefs of family and friends, I do occasionally consume food that is not dessert.
And to top that, I sometimes even cook food that is not dessert!

Tonight's recipe: Garlic Cheddar Chicken - heavy on the garlic :)

Garlic Cheddar Chicken
1/2 C. butter
4 - 6 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 C. dry breadcrumbs
1/2 C. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 1/2 C. shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 tsp. dried parsley
1/4 tsp. dried oregano
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
1/8 tsp. salt
8 boneless skinless chicken breast halves - pounded thin

1. Preheat oven to 350.
2. Melt the butter in a saucepan over low heat and cook the garlic until tender, about 5 minutes.
3. In a shallow bowl, mix the breadcrumbs, cheeses, parsley, oregano, pepper and salt.
4. Dip each chicken breast in the garlic butter to coat, then press into the breadcrumb mixture. Arrange the coated chicken breasts in a 9x13 inch baking dish. Drizzle with any remaining butter and top with remaining breadcrumb mixture.
5. Bake 30 minutes in preheated oven, or until chicken is no longer pink and juices run clear.

NOTE: This recipe will only be successful if prepared while playing the Sinatra/Crosby Christmas album.
Judy Garland will do in a pinch.

First, pull some boneless skinless chicken breasts out of your freezer and thaw them in a sink of hot water.

Take pictures of your cute dog while you wait.

Chop about 3 cloves of garlic, more or less. I chose more :)

Then shredded cheddar cheese, and some parmesan.

Then 1/2 cup of butter. Because you're bored, cut the butter into nice little cubes.

Then take multiple pictures of it from varying angles.

Go take a few more pictures of your cute dog.

Then, and only then, can you melt the butter in a saucepan, and add the chopped up garlic to it. Cook and stir for about 5 minutes.

Once that pesky frozen chicken is finally thawed, pound it out.

Let out that aggression!

In a shallow bowl, combine some breadcrumbs, the cheeses, and some oregano, parsley and a little salt and pepper.

Stir it all up until it looks like...well, whatever that looks like.

Next, slather the garlic butter on the pounded-out chicken.

Coat the chicken with the cheese mixture and place it in a PAM-sprayed casserole dish. You'll probably have to sprinkle the cheese on, because it doesn't stick very well.

Keep going till you finish all the chicken...

Drizzle the leftover butter over the chicken. Then sprinkle whatever leftover cheese and breadcrumb mixture there is.

Pop it in the oven for 30 minutes.

Now clean up that disgraceful mess!

What have I told you about cleaning as you go?!

~ ~ ~ 30 Minutes Later ~ ~ ~

When I opened the oven, smoke came billowing out at me. Alarming, at first. But it had nothing to do with the chicken and everything to do with the baked-on remnants of something in the bottom of the oven. It was charred beyond recognition, so I guess we'll never know what it was.

Anyway, pull the pan(s) out of the oven, place on stovetop and make conscious effort to catch your saliva.
Inhale deeply.
Check to make sure that the juices run clear, not pink.

Repeat picture-taking-from-multiple-angles ritual.

And then...enjoy :)

~Happy Cooking~

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