Parmesan-Crusted Baked Chicken
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Main Courses - Parmesan-Crusted Baked Chicken
BY: Diane Phillips
These chicken breasts become supermoist when baked in a garlic- and oregano-accented tomato sauce. Even more appealing, though, is the topping of a gooey, two-cheese mix. Serve the chicken over pasta, polenta or rice.
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 cup finely chopped sweet onion
1 garlic clove, minced
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 (28-oz.) can crushed tomatoes in puree
2 teaspoons sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt, divided
1 teaspoon pepper, divided
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
8 boneless skinless chicken breast halves
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
1. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in medium saucepan over medium heat until hot. Cook onion, garlic and oregano 4 minutes or until onion is softened, stirring occasionally. Add tomatoes, sugar, 1 teaspoon of the salt and 1/2 teaspoon of the pepper; simmer 35 minutes or until sauce is thick, stirring occasionally. Stir in cream. (Sauce can be made 4 days ahead and refrigerated or 1 month ahead and frozen. Reheat over low heat before using.)
2. Spoon 2 cups of the sauce into 13x9-inch baking dish or 2 (8-inch) square baking dishes for two meals.
3. Sprinkle chicken with remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper. Heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil in large skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Cook chicken 4 to 6 minutes or until browned, turning once. Place chicken on top of sauce. Spoon remaining sauce over chicken; sprinkle with cheeses. (Chicken can be made to this point 2 days ahead and refrigerated or 1 month ahead and frozen. Defrost; let stand at room temperature 30 minutes before baking.)
4. Heat oven to 350°F. Bake, uncovered, 20 to 30 minutes or until sauce is bubbling, chicken is no longer pink in center and cheese begins to brown.
PER SERVING: 420 calories, 24.5 g total fat (10.5 g saturated fat), 39 g protein, 11.5 g carbohydrate, 115 mg cholesterol, 1070 mg sodium, 2 g fiber
For a one-dish meal, cook 8 oz. pasta according to package directions; toss with 1/2 cup of the tomato sauce. Spread in baking dish; top with chicken, remaining sauce and cheese. Proceed as directed in Step 4.
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