I really wanted chicken parm and and spaghetti this week. I’m also trying to avoid heavy starches like pasta. Wait until you see what I used instead. This recipe includes chicken parm, tomato sauce, and slow braised asparagus with garlic and lemon.
When I told my friend I was working on a chicken parm recipe, he looked at my like I had two heads. As if, ‘chicken parm’ was beneath the merits of Eat Up! Kitchen. Believe me, there is nothing greater than an all from scratch homemade chicken parm. Actually, it took me several years to get this just right. No one ever taught me how to make chicken parm but I figured it out on my own before there were youtube videos around to show us how to do everything. Two things I had to figure out, which of course are obvious now; (1) slice the chicken in half before you pound it flat, and (2) cook over a medium-low heat. Also, make your own sauce and use really good cheese.
Many families have grandma’s handed down Italian tomato sauce recipe that could never be altered or diverted from. I don’t have that and I don’t subscribe to one sauce fits all. In fact, I could have easily made three different sauces just for this chicken parm. This sauce is one of a few basic recipes I have; whole San Marzano canned tomatoes, olive oil, garlic, oregano, basil, salt, red pepper, and black pepper.
When it came to the greens for the plate, I decided on in-season organic asparagus. But, I’m bored of steamed, roasted, or sautéed asparagus. I ended up using a 1/3 cup of quality olive oil to braise the asparagus with garlic in a covered pan for about a half hour. They were melt in your mouth delicious. Half way through, I squeezed the juice of half a lemon in to the pan before covering it back up. It was all well balanced without the lemon or garlic over powering the bright asparagus flavor.
For the spaghetti, I used this Explore Cuisine Organic Soy Bean Spaghetti. It’s actually really good. It doesn’t exactly taste like pasta, but it has a nice al dente texture, it’s filling, very healthy, and it does what spaghetti was designed to do; deliver tomato sauce to your food hole.