Yield: 4 servings
Chicken Parmesan 3 tablespoons olive oil 1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary leaves 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves 1 teaspoon chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves Salt and freshly ground black pepper Eight 3-ounce chicken cutlets 1 1/2 cups Simple Tomato Sauce, recipe follows, or purchased marinara sauce 1/2 cup shredded mozzarella 16 teaspoons grated Parmesan 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil 1 small onion, chopped 2 cloves garlic, chopped 1 stalk celery, chopped 1 carrot, chopped Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper Two 32-ounce cans crushed tomatoes 4 to 6 fresh basil leaves 2 dried bay leaves 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, optional
1/2 pound of pasta of your choice, cooked al dente Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F. Stir the oil and herbs in a small bowl to blend. Season with salt and pepper. Brush both sides of the cutlets with the herb oil. Heat a large heavy oven-proof skillet over high heat. Add the cutlets and cook just until brown, about 2 minutes per side. Remove the skillet from the heat.
For the Marinara Sauce: In a large casserole pot, heat the oil over medium high heat. Add the onion and garlic and saute until soft and translucent, about 2 minutes. Add the celery and carrots and season with salt and pepper. Saute until all the vegetables are soft, about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, basil, and bay leaves and simmer covered on low heat for 1 hour or until thick. Remove the bay leaves and check for seasoning. If the sauce still tastes acidic, add unsalted butter, 1 tablespoon at a time to round out the flavors. Add half the tomato sauce into the bowl of a food processor. Process until smooth. Continue with the remaining tomato sauce. Spoon the marinara sauce over and around the cutlets. Sprinkle 1 teaspoon of the mozzarella over each cutlet, then sprinkle 2 teaspoons of the Parmesan over each. Sprinkle the butter pieces atop the cutlets. Bake until the cheese melts and the chicken is cooked through, about 3 to 5 minutes.
Serve with pasta.