Chicken Parmigiana

chicken parmigiana

 

Parmesan coated chicken breasts are baked in a tomato and basil sauce covered with mozzarella. They are served with tagliatelle tossed in chopped parsley and garlic butter and sautéed courgettes/zucchini.

 

Chicken Parmigiana
Prepares: 4 servings
 
  • Preparation time 45 minutes
  • Cooking time: 30 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • For the parmigiana
  • For the tomato sauce
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 400g tin (½ x 28 fl oz can) chopped/diced tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • 2 tbsp fresh basil, shredded
  • salt and pepper

  • For the chicken
  • 28g (1 oz) Parmesan cheese, finely grated (¼ cup)
  • 28g (1 oz) flour (3 tbsp)
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 28g (1 oz) butter
  • 4 boneless chicken breasts, skinned
  • 8 thin slices mozzarella cheese
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • fresh basil sprigs to garnish

  • For the tagliatelle
  • 8 tagliatelle nests
  • 28g (1 oz) butter (2 tbsp, or ¼ stick)
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 2–3 tbsp fresh flat-leaf/Italian parsley, chopped

  • To serve
  • 2 courgettes/zucchini
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

  • Equipment
  • An ovenproof dish large enough to take the four chicken breasts in a single layer


  1. Method
  2. Preheat the oven to 200C/400°F/gas mark 6

  3. For the parmigiana
  4. For the tomato sauce
  5. Put the olive oil and garlic into a pan over a medium-low heat and, as soon as the oil starts to sizzle, stir in the tomatoes and tomato purée. Simmer gently for 10 minutes to thicken a little. Add the shredded basil leaves and season.

  6. For the chicken
  7. Meanwhile, measure the flour into a plastic bag and season. Then add the grated Parmesan and shake to mix. Spread out onto a large plate.

  8. Tip the egg into a shallow dish.

  9. Turn the chicken pieces in the egg, shaking off any excess egg while lifting them from the dish. Then coat with the flour and cheese mixture.

  10. Melt the butter in a frying pan/skillet and add the chicken pieces to the pan. Cook over a medium heat for 3 minutes on each side until they are light golden in colour. Transfer to the ovenproof dish and pour the tomato sauce around the chicken.

  11. Lay two slices of mozzarella on top of each chicken breast then sprinkle over the remaining Parmesan.

  12. Cover the dish loosely with foil and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and cook for a further 10 minutes until the cheese is lightly browned.

  13. For the tagliatelle
  14. Meanwhile, bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Add the tagliatelle and cook for the length of time suggested on your packet.

  15. While it is cooking, mix the butter with the garlic and chopped parsley.

  16. Drain the tagliatelle, return it to the pan with the parsley butter and toss together.

  17. For the courgettes/zucchini
  18. Cut the courgettes/zucchini into 1.25cm (½ inch) slices.

  19. Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan/skillet over a medium heat. Add the the courgettes and toss in the oil. Sauté for 3–5 minutes, turning frequently until cooked through.

  20. To serve
  21. Lift the chicken breasts from the pan onto four serving plates and spoon the tomato sauce around. Garnish the chicken with the basil sprigs. Serve with the tagliatelle and courgettes/zucchini.

Updated: November 18, 2017

Mediterranean Lamb Cutlets with Potatoes Dauphinoise

Mediterranean Lamb Cutlets with Potatoes Dauphinoise

 

A dish that is full of flavour and very scrumptious. Lamb cutlets sit on a base of garlic roasted vegetables with a hint of basil and rosemary and served with thinly sliced potatoes cooked in a garlic cream sauce.

 

Mediterranean Lamb Cutlets with Potatoes Dauphinoise
Prepares: 4 servings
 
  • Preparation time: 55 minutes
  • Cooking time: 50 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • For the ratatouille and lamb cutlets
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ medium aubergine/eggplant
  • 1 red pepper, deseeded
  • 2 courgettes/zucchini
  • 1 tbsp fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 8 lamb cutlets
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
  • 400g tin cherry tomatoes (small can)
  • 1 tbsp fresh basil leaves, torn
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • For the potatoes dauphinoise
  • 800g (1 lb 12 oz) potatoes (5 medium)
  • 240ml (8 fl oz) whole milk (1 cup)
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
  • 240ml (8 fl oz) double cream/whipping cream or heavy cream (1 cup)
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • whole nutmeg


  1. Method
  2. For the potatoes dauphinoise
  3. Peel, wash and cut the potatoes into 5mm (¼ inch) thick slices.

  4. Bring the milk to the boil in a sauté pan with the garlic.

  5. Reduce the heat and stir in the cream, seasoning, and a little grated nutmeg.

  6. Now add the potato slices and turn to coat. Simmer very gently for 20–25 minutes until they are just tender. Turn every 5 minutes so all the slices cook evenly and they don’t stick to the bottom of the pan.

  7. Tip into an ovenproof dish 28 x 20cm (11 x 8 inches).

  8. They will need to cook in the oven for a further 20–25 minutes until bubbling and the top is starting to brown. Before putting in the oven, though, prepare the vegetables for the ratatouille. They will need to cook for the same length of time as the potatoes and so they go into the oven together.

  9. For the ratatouille and lamb cutlets
  10. Preheat the oven to 190°C (375°F) gas 5.

  11. Pour the oil into a roasting tin/pan and put in the oven while it is heating up.

  12. Cut the aubergine/eggplant, pepper and courgettes/zucchini into 2.5cm (1 inch) cubes.

  13. Tip into the roasting tin and sprinkle over the rosemary and seasoning. Turn in the oil to coat, then return to the oven and roast for 20–25 minutes until tender. (At this point, also put the potatoes in the oven.) Turn the ratatouille halfway through cooking.

  14. Meanwhile preheat a griddle pan or heavy based frying pan/skillet.

  15. Season the cutlets and spread the garlic over them. Then, over a moderate heat, cook for 5–10 minutes on each side, depending on how thick your cutlets are.

  16. While the cutlets are cooking, empty the tomatoes into a medium sized pan and place over a gentle heat.

  17. Once the ratatouille is cooked, add it to the tomatoes and stir through. Now add the torn basil leaves.

  18. To serve
  19. Divide the vegetables between four plates and top with two cutlets each. Serve with the potato dauphinoise alongside.

 

Steak aux Légumes

 

Steak aux légumes

 

A simple sauce is poured over the steaks to marinade for just 30 minutes. They are then quickly fried and served with the sauce drizzled over and accompanied with a selection of vegetables.

 

Steak aux légumes
Prepares: 4 servings
 
  • Preparation time: 20 minutes
  • Marinading time: 30 minutes
  • Cooking time: 25 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • For the steak
  • 4 x 170g (6 oz) good quality steak
  • 4 tbsp soy sauce
  • 4 tsp dark brown sugar
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • ground black pepper
  • ½ tsp salt
  • olive oil

  • For the vegetables
  • 675g (1lb 8 oz) baby or new potatoes (about 16)
  • 1 small broccoli head
  • 225g (8 oz) carrots (3 medium), sliced thinly into rounds
  • 2 small courgettes/zucchini, cut into 1.25cm (½ inch) rounds
  • 1½ tbsp olive oil
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • Equipment
  • a heavy-based frying pan/skillet for the steaks if not barbecuing
  • a deep-sided frying pan/skillet with lid for the vegetables

  • To serve
  • baby or new potatoes and a medley of vegetables (for example, broccoli, mange tout, baby carrots, courgettes/zucchini)



  1. Method
  2. Lay the steaks, in a single layer, in a shallow dish.

  3. In a small bowl add the next 5 ingredients and mix together. Pour over the steaks, cover the dish, and leave to marinade for 30 minutes, turning the steaks halfway through.

  4. Once the steaks have finished marinading, prepare the vegetables.

  5. Wash and cut the broccoli into small florets discarding any stems. Place in a bowl along with the sliced carrots and courgettes/zucchini. Pour over the olive oil and season, then stir through to coat the vegetables.

  6. Put four plates in the oven to warm.

  7. Wash the potatoes, place in a pan, cover with water, and bring to the boil. Simmer for 15–20 minutes until tender.

  8. The steak can be barbecued or cooked in a heavy-based frying frying pan/skillet. If using a frying pan/skillet, first heat the pan and then brush with olive oil. Remove the steaks from the marinade (reserving the marinade) and cook over a medium heat for 3 minutes on each side. Remove from the pan to one of the warmed plates, cover the plate with foil, and leave the steaks to rest for 5 minutes.

  9. While the steaks are cooking the vegetables can also be cooked. First, heat the deep sided frying pan/skillet, then toss in the vegetables and sauté over a medium heat for 4 minutes, stirring a couple of times. Reduce the heat a little, add the lid, and continue to cook for 5 minutes or until the vegetables are just tender. Remove the lid, turn up the heat again, and cook for a further minute to crisp up the vegetables.

  10. While the steak is resting, stir the reserved marinade into the steak pan and, over a gentle heat, let it bubble to heat through. (If the steak was barbecued, once the vegetables have been cooked and removed from their pan, use this pan to heat through the marinade.)

  11. Serve the steak with the sauce poured over and the vegetables alongside.

Updated: September 25, 2017

Quick Mediterranean Chicken

Quick Mediterranean Chicken

 

Quick Mediterranean chicken combines strips of chicken fillets with peppers and penne cooked in a herb flavoured soup. This is a really quick dish to prepare and cook. Great for those nights when time is short.

 

Quick Mediterranean Chicken
Prepares: 4 servings
 
  • Preparation time: about 15 minutes
  • Cooking time: 20 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 chicken breast fillets, cut into strips
  • 1 yellow pepper, sliced
  • 1 red pepper, sliced
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 10 fl oz can tomato, basil and oregano soup (Campbells)
  • 300ml/10 fl oz water
  • salt and pepper
  • 170g/6 oz penne (De Cecco is my favourite)
  • 2 tbsp fresh basil, chopped

  • To serve
  • Serve with sautéed courgettes/zucchini and broccoli florets.

  • Equipment
  • Large frying pan/skillet or saute pan


  1. Method
  2. Heat oil in the pan over a medium heat. Add the chicken, pepper and garlic and stir fry for 5 minutes.

  3. Stir in the soup and water. Season to taste. Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is cooked through and peppers are soft.

  4. Meanwhile bring a large pan of water to the boil and add a pinch of salt and a glug of olive oil. Add the pasta to the pan and cook according to the directions on the packet. Drain. Stir the pasta through the chicken and peppers.

  5. Sprinkle over the basil and serve.

 

Mediterranean Roasted Chicken

Mediterranean Roasted Chicken

 

A really tasty dish of chicken and herbs, roasted with red peppers, courgettes, plum tomatoes and baby potatoes, all in one pan.

 

Mediterranean Roasted Chicken
Prepares: 4 servings
 
  • Preparation time: About 30 minutes
  • Marinating time: At least 30 minutes
  • Cooking time: 40 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 12g fresh basil
  • 12g fresh mint
  • 4 lemon thyme sprigs
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 chicken joints*
  • 2 small red peppers, deseeded and chopped
  • 2 courgettes/zucchini, sliced
  • 600g/1 lb 4 oz baby potatoes
  • ½ × 400g/¼ × 28 fl oz can plum tomatoes, halved
  • 1 lemon, juice only

  • *I prefer to use boneless chicken breasts because they are really succulent. But legs or breasts with bone in would work too.

  • Equipment
  • Large roasting tin


  1. Method
  2. Finely chop two thirds of the basil and mint and 2 lemon thyme sprigs, reserve the remaining third. Using a pestle and mortar, pound together the herbs, crushed garlic and two tablespoons of the olive oil until they form a paste. Or use a food processor. Put the chicken in a shallow bowl and cover with the herb mixture. Cover, refrigerate and leave for at least 30 minutes to marinate.

  3. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/gas mark 6.

  4. Put the peppers, courgettes and potatoes in a bowl. Season and pour over the remaining olive oil. Toss together until all the vegetables are well coated. Carefully add the tomatoes. Spread in the roasting tin and add the chicken and marinade.

  5. Roast for 40 minutes until the vegetables are tender and the chicken is cooked through.

  6. Squeeze over the lemon juice and scatter over the reserved herbs.

  7. Note
  8. Tinned plum tomatoes can be substituted for the fresh plum tomatoes. Just add them to the pan during the last 15 minutes of cooking.

 

 

 

Pork in a Tomato Sauce

Pork in Tomato Sauce

 

A blend of sweetness and tartness added to a tomato base makes a very tasty sauce for this pork dish. It is easy to prepare and is cooked in one pan. Just add sautéed courgettes.

 

Pork in a Tomato Sauce
Prepares: 4 servings
 
  • Preparation time: About 30 minutes
  • Cooking time: 30 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 4 boneless pork chops or tenderloin cut into four portions
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1 onion, peeled and chopped
  • 600g/l lb 4 oz baby potatoes
  • 2 tbsp muscovado or dark brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp redcurrant jelly
  • 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • ½ pint/300ml tomato passata*
  • sprigs of thyme, optional

  • *As an alternative to passata, chopped/diced tomatoes can be used

  • To serve
  • Accompany with sautéed courgettes/zucchini

  • Equipment
  • A large, deep sided, frying pan with lid.


  1. Method
  2. Heat the oil in the pan over a medium heat. Brown the pork for 2–3 minutes on each side and then set aside.

  3. Turn the heat down to low and add the onions to the pan and cook for about 5 minutes. They just need to be softened, not browned.

  4. Add the potatoes to the pan and stir to coat them (add more oil if necessary). Turn the heat to a medium-low and cook for 3 minutes.

  5. Stir in the sugar, jelly, vinegar and passata, add the pork and a few sprigs of thyme, if using.

  6. Cover and simmer for 25–30 minutes until the potatoes are cooked through.

  7. For courgettes/zucchini
  8. Cut into rounds and toss in a little virgin oil. Sauté for about 3 minutes turning frequently.