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~ Alfredo alla Primavera Parmesan-Chicken Quarters ~

IMG_4911In Italian, fettuccine means "little ribbons", which is why stranded pasta is always used in its preparation.  In Italian, primavera implies "Spring", and culinarily, primavera simply means that fresh vegetables (raw or blanched) have been added to the dish during, or at the end, of its preparation.  Long story short, fettuccini Alfredo that has vegetables added to it is simply referred to as Alfredo alla primavera.  Alfredo and Alfredo primavera can be served as either a pasta course during a meal, a side-dish with a meal, or, (in a larger portion) as a main-course, and, in Italian-American restaurants, because we Americans like protein with our pasta, it's common to find a lightly-pounded, breadcrumb-and-Parmesan-coated, quickly-sautéed Parmesan-chicken breast (not to be confused with chicken Parmesan) as an add-on to this rich, creamy pasta dish.

IMG_4568Oven-roasted chicken leg-thigh quarters are on my weeknight meal rotation two or three times a month.  They're tender and juicy, and, sigh-oh-my, that gorgeous, golden, crispy skin.  Each one is a one-piece drumstick and thigh, which means each piece is the perfect one portion, so, no guesswork involved, you never have any leftovers (unless you want leftovers, then you roast six-eight).  No matter what you're seasoning or saucing these with (the possibilities are almost endless), the upfront prep-work is minimal.  Into the oven they go for 1 hour, 15-20 minutes, and, your hands are, for the most part, free to make an easy side-dish or two and set the table.

Creamy, rich pasta w/tender vegetables served w/tender, juicy chicken encased in a crunchy breadcrumb & cheese coating:

IMG_4924Six on-hand ingredients + 1 hour, 15 minutes = dinner:

IMG_48444  chicken leg-thigh quarters, about 4-4 1/2 pounds

4  tablespoons salted butter

freshly-ground sea salt and peppercorn blend

1  large egg

3/4  cup panko breadcrumbs

1/2  cup finely-grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

IMG_4850 IMG_4850 IMG_4850 IMG_4850 IMG_4850 IMG_4850 IMG_4850 IMG_4866~Step 1.  Melt the butter in the microwave.  Set aside to cool slightly, 5-6 minutes.  In a small bowl or ramekin, whisk the egg with a fork.  In a medium bowl, stir together the breadcrumbs and cheese, then, if you have a pizzeria-style cheese-shaker-type container, transfer the mixture to the shaker.  When the butter has cooled, whisk the egg into the melted butter and set aside.

6a0120a8551282970b0263e95a63a9200b 6a0120a8551282970b0263e95a63a9200b 6a0120a8551282970b0263e95a63a9200b IMG_4871 IMG_4871 IMG_4871 IMG_4871 IMG_4871~Step 2. Arrange chicken quarters in a large disposable roasting pan into which a wire rack has been inserted and a sheet of parchment has been placed atop rack.  Using a pastry brush, paint the entire surface of all four quarters with all of the butter/egg mixture.  Generously season tops of chicken with freshly-ground sea salt and peppercorn blend.  Shake the breadcrumb/cheese mixture onto the chicken, and, using a spoon on your fingertips to pat and press it onto the entire surface of each one.  Roast on center rack of 350° oven, 1 hour, 15 minutes.  During the last 30 minutes of the roasting process, prepare my nice and easy spaghetti Alfredo all primavera.

Portion Alfredo primavera into 4, large, shallow serving bowls:

IMG_4889Top each portion w/an entire chicken quarter & serve ASAP:

IMG_4896Alfredo alla Primavera Parmesan-Chicken Quarters:  Recipe yields 4 servings.

Special Equipment List: 1-cup measuring container; fork; small bowl or ramekin; pizzaria-style cheese-shaker-type container (optional); spoon; 20" x 12" x 4" disposable aluminum roasting pan or 17 1/2" x 12 1/2" baking pan; wire cooling rack; parchment paper; pastry brush

6a0120a8551282970b022ad3e1d465200bCook's Note:  Would you like garlic bread with that?  Of course you would.  Damn the torpedoes and full speed ahead.  A double-whammy of calories and carbohydrates every now and then never hurt anyone, and, eating this winner-winner Parmesan-chicken dinner wouldn't be complete without a big basket of garlic bread to go with it.  We'll have a salad too, because it too goes great with this meal. Try my recipe for ~ A Great Garlic Bread Spread for Great Garlic Bread ~.

"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti

(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2020)


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