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Chicken Parmesan: Dot's Delicious Taste of the Midwest Recipe

My husband and I are what could be called foodies. We enjoy sampling and discovering new and different foods from all areas of the world.

Dot's chicken Parmesan with pasta, mushrooms, and asparagus

Dot's chicken Parmesan with pasta, mushrooms, and asparagus

Dinner Guest Recipe

My husband and I were guests at the home of my husband's boss and his wife many years ago, and the main entree at dinner was chicken Parmesan. Everyone at the table thought that we were eating chicken breasts, only to find out that it was chicken thighs that merely appeared as breast meat. The time was the mid-1970s, and the place was Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin.

I was not the only one requesting the recipe that night, and Dot graciously shared it with us. It has been one of our tried-and-true recipes all these years later when we wish to recapture those Midwest flavors with an Italian-type flair. It also makes us think of this sweet couple who later became good friends of ours.

Cook Time

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

30 min

50 min

1 hour 20 min

6 servings

Ingredients

  • 6 chicken thighs, boned, skinned, and flattened
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 cup plain breadcrumbs, or enough to coat the chicken pieces
  • 1/4 cup olive oil, or salad oil
  • 3 (8-ounce) cans tomato sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 4 ounces mozzarella cheese, grated
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Instructions

  1. Flatten the boneless, skinless chicken thighs with a mallet. (I do it in a plastic freezer bag to keep it from splattering and contaminating other surfaces.)
  2. Beat the egg and combine with the water in a shallow dish.
  3. Put the breadcrumbs in a shallow dish next to the egg dish.
  4. Dip the flattened chicken thighs first in the egg mixture, and then in the breadcrumb mixture, and set aside.
  5. In a stovetop skillet, heat the oil, and add the breaded chicken thighs and brown on both sides.
  6. Mix the tomato sauce with basil, oregano, and thyme. Spread a thin layer of the sauce on the bottom of a 1 1/2 quart glass, oblong baking dish.
  7. Place the browned chicken thighs in the dish, overlapping slightly, if necessary.
  8. Cover with the rest of the sauce, and top it with the Parmesan cheese.
  9. Bake in a 400 degree Fahrenheit oven for 30 minutes.
  10. Remove from the oven and put the mozzarella cheese over the chicken. Return to the oven and bake until the cheese melts, another 20 minutes or so.
  11. Plate and serve with your choice of accompaniments.

Serving Suggestions

We have eaten Dot's chicken Parmesan many times over the years. Sometimes we serve it with pasta, as shown in the photo below. Accompanying the pasta, we had a fresh green salad and a sauteed and then baked dish of mushrooms with pieces of green asparagus. A good bottle of chianti wine topped off this latest meal.

Sometimes we serve the chicken and the flavorful sauce over some creamy polenta. Vegetables can vary depending upon eating preferences and what may be fresh and in season.

The cooked chicken also makes a delicious hot or cold sandwich.

Our latest meal using Dot's recipe.

Our latest meal using Dot's recipe.

Dining should be a delightful and a beautiful experience.

— Gauri Khan, interior designer

© 2020 Peggy Woods

Comments

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 12, 2020:

Hi Manatita,

It is about time that you enjoy another good chicken Parmesan! (Smile)

manatita44 from london on December 12, 2020:

I probably had a decent chicken parmesan around 1980. A long time ago. Looks great though! A visual delectable!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 10, 2020:

Hi Linda,

Thanks for thinking outside of the box, so-to-speak. Good cooks often vary their recipes, and I am guessing that you are one of them.

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on December 10, 2020:

The sauce sounds delicious. I think it would be lovely with other food in addition to chicken.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 09, 2020:

Hi Devika,

My husband and I also like Parmesan cheese and always keep some in our refrigerator. I am pleased that you like the sound of this recipe. Thanks for your comment.

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on December 09, 2020:

Chicken Parmesan sounds a delicious meal. Peggy I like the idea of your recipes and creative cooking adds more taste to a meal. Parmesan cheese is one of my favorite cheeses.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 09, 2020:

Hi Mary,

By flattening the boneless thighs, I think that cooked in this manner, it would fool most people into thinking that they are eating chicken breasts.

Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on December 09, 2020:

Hi Peggy. The thighs are more tasty and thanks for sharing a way of making it look more like chicken breasts. This looks very tasty.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 09, 2020:

Hi Rosina,

That is the nice thing about recipes. They are guides but can easily be adjusted to suit people's tastes. I gather from this and another comment you made that you are not fond of eating cheese.

Rosina S Khan on December 09, 2020:

I love this recipe but I would like to prepare it with less cheese. Serving it with pasta looks like a good idea. The picture brought water to my mouth. Thank you for the wonderful share, Peggy.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 08, 2020:

Hi Chitrangada,

Thank you for the compliment on the eye appeal of this recipe. I hope you enjoy it as much as we do. Thanks for your comment.

Chitrangada Sharan from New Delhi, India on December 08, 2020:

Hi Peggy!

Your recipe looks wonderful, with all it’s ingredients and details. As they say, you eat with your eyes first. This recipe has that visual appeal, and I enjoyed reading about it. I intend to try this this weekend.

Thank you for sharing this delicious recipe.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 08, 2020:

Hi Eric,

I look forward to your feedback when you cook this dish, assuming the comments are still available to be made. Enjoy!

Eric Caunca from Philippines on December 08, 2020:

It looks like delicious. I've saved it. I'll cook it on other day. Thank you.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 08, 2020:

Hi Nigel,

I hope you make this recipe at home. It is not that difficult, and the flavor results are amazing. Thanks for your comment.

Nigel Koay from Malaysia on December 08, 2020:

Great recipe right there, its about time i try to make chicken parm at home too, yours looks appetising! Thank you.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 08, 2020:

Hi Liza,

I am pleased that you like this recipe. Enjoy your meal tonight!

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 08, 2020:

Hello MG Singh,

I am pleased that you like the look and sound of this recipe. Thanks for your comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 08, 2020:

Hi Bill,

Using chicken thighs generally ends up with a more moist chicken flavor. In this recipe, people would think that they are eating chicken breasts because of the preparation. I am glad you liked this.

Liza from USA on December 08, 2020:

Yummy! As I'm looking at your dish, admiring it, I am preparing for a quick dinner tonight. The food looks delicious, Peggy. Thanks for sharing the recipe!

MG Singh from UAE on December 08, 2020:

Wonderful article to whet the appetite.

Bill De Giulio from Massachusetts on December 08, 2020:

This is right up my alley, Peggy. Looks great. I really like the idea of using chicken thighs instead of breasts. Thank you for sharing with us.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 08, 2020:

Hi Ivana,

I am happy to be able to share this recipe with you and others. Thanks for your comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 08, 2020:

Hi FlourishAnyway,

I'm very sad to hear that you are doing without an oven or stovetop right now. I hope your order for a new one comes in sooner rather than later!

Ivana Divac from Serbia on December 08, 2020:

This looks delicious. Thank you for sharing a great recipe with us!

FlourishAnyway from USA on December 08, 2020:

Oh, Peggy, how you tease and taunt. I've been without an oven or stovetop since the day before Thanksgiving and due to appliance sales, backorders, and COVID in my area, the replacement that I have ordered won't be here for a good several weeks. This made me so jealous and terribly hungry. It looks delicious. Chicken thighs are stronger in flavor which should make this terrific, and they are less expensive which is so fitting with the need for thriftiness these days. Well played! I'll just sit here and dream.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 08, 2020:

Hi Bill,

Yes, this is a definite nod to the flavors of the Midwest. I hope you enjoy this recipe. Thanks for your comment.

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 08, 2020:

Hi Nell Rose,

Like you, we try and keep some chicken in our freezer to have available for various kinds of meals. I hope you enjoy this recipe.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on December 08, 2020:

Sign me up! I would eat this six days a week and twice on Sunday. I'm a big chicken fan. Thanks for the recipe, Midwest-style, back to my roots we go. :)

Peggy Woods (author) from Houston, Texas on December 08, 2020:

Hi Pamela,

I'm glad you like the sound of this recipe. I generally reuse freezer bags in this manner if the items inside have been wrapped in plastic wrap. That way, the bags serve two purposes before they have to be discarded or recycled.

Nell Rose from England on December 08, 2020:

I love all new chicken recipes. I have just ordered two for Christmas, and I always have wings or chicken pieces in my freezer. Great idea Peggy!

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on December 08, 2020:

This recipe sounds and looks delicious.. I think The plastic bag is a good idea for the chicken. I am going to show this recipe to my husband as he does most of the cooking since I have become more disabled. Thank you, Peggy.