Recipe For Health
Jill Yarbrough, MSU Dining Services Test Kitchen Manager
Featured Food: Chicken Yield: Serves 6Learn more about Chicken

Ingredients

  • 6 (4 oz. each) boneless, skinless chicken breasts, thawed
  • ⅓ c. flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 T. water
  • 4 c. dry bread crumbs
  • ¾ c. grated parmesan cheese
  • ¼ c. butter, melted
  • ⅛ t. black pepper
  • 8 oz. fresh tomatoes, diced
  • 2 t. olive oil
  • 1 t. minced garlic
  • ⅓ c. fresh basil, chopped

Preparation

Put flour in a bowl. In another bowl, whisk together eggs and water. In a third bowl, combine bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, butter and black pepper. Coat each chicken breast in flour, dip in eggs, and then coat on both sides with bread crumb mixture. Place on baking sheet. Bake in 350°F oven for 15 to 20 minutes or until thermometer inserted in thickest part of chicken reads 160°F. 

Combine tomatoes, olive oil, garlic and basil. Before serving, top each chicken breast with tomato basil mixture.

Learn More About Chicken

Are all chickens created equal? Labeling terms make you think that one chicken is better than another. Words such as “natural,” “organic” and “free range” are defined and regulated by the USDA. For the most flavor, consider buying organic chicken or finding a farmer who raises free range chickens. Chickens allowed to roam about have more tasty meat. The typical supermarket chicken is a broiler-fryer, a young tender bird about six or seven weeks old. Broiler-fryers grow fast and move little resulting in meat that is fairly bland. 

Any one of these methods will make a broiler-fryer more flavorful: 

• Marinate chicken in an acidic liquid for a few hours to two days in the refrigerator. The acidity in the marinade typically comes from vinegar, buttermilk, wine, fruit juice or yogurt. For large or thick pieces, slice thin before marinating or use a cooking syringe to inject the marinade. 

• Brine chicken in a salt solution using two to four tablespoons of salt per quart of water. Make enough brine to completely immerse the chicken and leave it there, refrigerated, for a few hours to two days depending on the thickness of the pieces. If you add herbs and spices to the brine, the aromatic molecules will move into the meat along with the salt and water. 

• Roast a whole chicken on a beverage can half-full of beer, wine, lemonade or broth. Begin by preparing one cup of spice rub. Rub half the spices under the chicken skin. Next, open the top of the can completely; fill halfway with the liquid and the other half of the spices. Then, keeping the can upright, insert it into the chicken cavity. Use the can and the chicken legs to form a tripod, sitting the chicken upright in a roasting pan or directly on the grill.

Peggy Crum MA, RD

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