Friday, March 9, 2012

Chicken Scampi

Way back in ‘99, right before Y2K hit and everyone thought their computers were going to die, I printed a recipe from Disney’sFamily Fun website.  It was from the kitchen of Jean Knight in Bokeelia Florida.  Giving credit where credit is due is what I’m all about.  However, I can’t find the recipe out there anymore (and this is why printed things should NEVER go away completely).  I still encourage you to go out there and check out some of their cute recipes, but you will not find this one out there among them.  

So, I feel like I can post it here (if anyone ever runs across Ms. Knight, I’d be happy to link to any website she has).  I’m going to write her original recipe verbatim, and then below that, I’ll put my own version.

FYI, this recipe originally garnered a kid friendliness rating of 10 (where 10 is begging you to make it every night) and a difficulty rating of 5 (scale of 1-10, 10 being ridiculously hard).  I can attest to the 10, since Leilani is begging me to make it again.  But I think the 5 is ranking it too high.  If you've shake and baked before, this is only taking in one step further.  I'd give it a 3 on difficulty.

Original Recipe

  • ¼ to 1 lb butter
  • Fresh Garlic
  • Boneless chicken breast (quantity is measured by how much you want to make.  Jean uses about 9 – 12 breasts to make enough for a large group, or 2 – 3 for a small family).
  • Italian Bread Crumbs

In a saucepan, melt butter and cook slowly with as much garlic as you like (the more, the better)(.  Refrigerate until ready to use.  Wash chicken and cut up in bite-size pieces.  Put chicken and bread crumbs in a bag and shake to coat.  Lay chicken pieces out on a cookie sheet.  Warm the butter and garlic mixture.

Meanwhile, put chicken in 325-degree oven for about 20 – 30 minutes, turning the chicken once halfway through.  Pour garlic and butter mixture over the top and bake fo another 15 – 20 minutes.  Serve.

Serves 2 – 30 people; takes 1 hour to cook

My Recipe

  • 1 stick of butter and ¼ cup of olive oil
  • 6 cloves of Garlic
  • Parsley / Italian Seasoning
  • 3 Breasts (because that’s what comes in a package nowadays)
  • Mixture of Italian & Panko Bread Crumbs
  • Salt
  • Spaghetti (or rice, is a great accompaniment)

Cut the chicken into bite sized pieces.  Put chicken in a Ziploc baggie and then add some bread crumbs.  (Yeah, I just guestimate).  Shake ‘em up.  If you need more coating, add some more and then re-shake.

Bake in a dish (I’d not use a cookie sheet because I feel like the juice is going to go everywhere – I use a glass casserole dish) at 325 for 20 minutes.  Turn them only if you remember to do so (I did, because I was starving and was waiting on them).

Meanwhile, since I make this with spaghetti I started boiling the water for that.  Once that’s  going, I started with the “juice.”  Melt the butter & oil with the garlic and some salt (unless you use salted butter…then you may not need it) and Italian Seasoning (and I happened to have some fresh parsley, so I stuck that in too).  Melt it over warm heat.  You may even want to add a splash of lemon or wine to it at this point…but I didn't.

After the 20 minutes is up, I turned the oven up to 425/broil (not too high on the heat); added the sauce and stirred the chicken .  I broiled for about 10 - 15 minutes just to brown the tops and make them all crispy.

Serve over the spaghetti or rice.

Served my family of 3, plus leftovers for 1 the next day.  Took too long for me to cook, which is why I sped it up with the broiler.

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