Sunday, January 23, 2011

Recap and Revelation

I've been pretty slammed with work since we last spoke, so I came to the conclusion that weekday posts just aren't going to happen. It's tough...after a day at the office and now trying to squeeze in gym trips (b/c pathetic attempts at 2.5 milers are really not going to prepare me for my spring races) the last thing I want to do is look at a computer screen. Hell, I'll admit it...I don't even want to shower, knowing I'll just have to do it again in a few hours!

So that's my deal...I'm going to stop stressing and post whenever I have fun stuff to post about. Fab. I know you guys don't want to hear about my dinner salads. Any fun lunch spots I explore, sans camera, can now be found on Yelp because it just seems like an appropriate spot for them.

Ok, moving on to a recap of this week...

Since I had Monday off, I took the opportunity to clean and get things in order. Jamie and I set off on a mid-morning jog (enh, more like a rough 3 mile shuffle...eek) that ended with a banh mi lunch. Originally we planned on going to Saigon Sandwich, but after some thought, we opted for a closer spot with seating options.

I picked up a banh mi at Out the Door the last time I ran errands and thought it was pretty good. I still think Saigon Sandwich is the best in the city (and the best deal), but Out the Door has really moist chicken and great bread (doesn't cut the roof of your mouth, but it's still crusty). At $8.50, it's one of the most expensive banh mis I've had, but I consider that extra $5 a convenience least for me.

Naturally, we ordered one 5-Spice Chicken and one Saigon Roast Pork and swapped halves. One thing I do appreciate about Out the Door is that they give you jalapenos on the side so you can adjust your spice level. My recent Saigon Sandwich experiences have been crazy spicy, so I'm cool with this little break. Personally, I think the chicken is way better than the pork, mostly b/c I'm not into dry meat. AND the chicken is better here than at Saigon Sandwich. Hm, maybe SS is the way to go for pork and OTD is for chicken cravings? Ah HAAA!

We picked up the missing ingredients for Jenna's Chicken Parmesan with Pepperoni (read: chicken. HA) and then we were homebound.

Jamie's flight didn't leave until late Monday evening so we had a late-ish dinner...super easy to prepare! I made a few modifications based on what we had in the apartment/what I could find at the markets nearby.

3 chicken breasts, butterflied
1 egg, beaten
1/2 c flour
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp freshly ground pepper
1 1/2 c panko
1 1/2 tbsp Italian seasoning
2 tbsp olive oil
1 jar marinara sauce
1/3 c fresh mozzarella, coarsely chopped
1/4 c parmesan cheese, grated
10-12 slices pepperoni

Preheat oven to 450 and spread some marinara sauce (just enough to coat) on the bottom of a shallow baking dish. This is a trusty standby I've been using lately:
It can be a little boring, so I usually dress it up with some garlic powder, salt, red pepper flakes and fresh tomatoes.

Combine flour, garlic powder, salt and pepper in a dish.

Combine panko and Italian seasoning in another dish.

Dump egg into a shallow dish and get ready to do some breading! First coat a chicken breast with flour and shake off the excess. Dip into the egg and then immediately coat with the panko. Set aside and repeat with remaining chicken.

Heat olive oil in a frying pan and brown chicken for 2 minutes on each side. Place on a baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes or until fully cooked. Remove from oven and blot on paper towels.

Place chicken in baking dish on top of sauce and coat with remaining sauce. Sprinkle with half the parmesan cheese followed by pepperoni, mozzarella and remaining parmesan.

Bake for 15 minutes or until cheese melts and serve with spaghetti.

Ok, so a couple things...
  • I know fresh mozzarella wasn't the wisest choice, but for some reason I couldn't find ANY regular mozzarella. WTF.
  • Bad sauce choice. You know how I mentioned it could be pretty boring? Yeah, REALLY boring in this. I seriously could have used some Prego or something.
  • I really only like pepperoni when it's crispy on a pizza, so Jamie and I were thinking maybe this would be great if we chopped up the pepperoni and crisped it up first. Sounds genius to me!
Not bad for a quick weeknight meal!

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