My mother used to cook crispy chicken whenever she had no time to prepare us something more elaborate. It was a common dish in our house. Since it was so easy to prepare, she always had some chicken breast at hand. Mom didn’t even marinate the meat, just sliced it in thin pieces, coated it with breadcrumbs and fried the slices. That was all. Together with some side dish, dinner was ready in no time.
I thought about recreating this classic recipe and placing the chicken in a yogurt marinade for some time to make it juicy and bring new flavors. Marinating is a very simple way of changing the taste of any meat, no matter how dull it is. Just make sure when you prepare a marinade that the herbs and spices you use match together. You may start with some already tested recipes and then create your own.
As my mother noticed, this recipe is extremely fast and you will be able to cook your dinner in about 30 minutes. If you want to add a side dish, you’ll probably need some extra minutes, but you can enjoy it with a vegetable salad for a healthy meal. It is said that meat goes well with non-starchy veggies if you want to be in shape. However, once in a while, I love eating crispy chicken with some fried potatoes.
Start by creating the marinade. Place the yogurt on a large plate and add the crushed garlic. An alternative would be to slice the garlic, but I believe that it releases its aroma best when crushed.
Slice the onion, and then chop it in small pieces. Also add to the yogurt.
Chop the rosemary and thyme. Whenever I can, I prefer using fresh herbs. It is alright to use dried ones too. For this recipe, the equivalent would be 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary and 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme.
Add the herbs to the marinade and stir well. If you leave the chicken to marinate long enough, all the flavors will transfer to the meat and it will become delicious.
Season well with salt and freshly ground pepper. Make sure you add enough salt because theoretically you won’t be adding any more. In practice, if you forget about salt (just like I often do; I usually remember when I taste the food), you may add it to the breadcrumbs mixture.
Rinse the meat, pat dry with paper towels and cut it in thin slices. Place one slice at a time in the marinade and use a spoon or a spatula to coat well with the yogurt mixture. Leave it to marinade for at least 8 hours.
Grate the parmesan (or whatever cheese you have, it’s not like you can’t prepare the recipe without this Italian cheese) and mix it with breadcrumbs. Coat the marinated meat with this mixture, flipping it over so it gets coated evenly.
Heat the vegetable oil in a frying pan. It is very important for the oil to be hot when adding the meat. Otherwise the crust will absorb a lot of oil when heating and it won’t be crispy anymore. Cook for 4-5 minutes on each side.
When it gets golden brown flip over and cook for 5 extra minutes on the other side too. After the cooking time is over, remove the chicken from the pan and place on paper towels to absorb the excess oil. It will be less fatty this way.
Serve with many veggies. I enjoyed it with 2 red onions and 2 small cucumbers and it was completely satisfying.