chicken again? Oh yeah.

So it was chicken night. Again. I thought, well, I can go all out, pull out the Chickpea flour, do a little dredging, a little sauteeing, a little baking.... and voilá.. Dinner is served.

Except I was tired. Really tired. I needed a shortcut. And there they were. Those fried pork rinds. You may know them as that unhealthy bag of snacks on the bottom shelf at the grocery store. Unhealthy but yummy. Surprise! They are NOT unhealthy. They are perfectly all natural and delicious. And perfect for a great crunchy breading for your chicken. Without the frying pan.

So, I used my oven fried chicken recipe. Hubby graciously butterflied the chicken for me, so they were manageable and would cook evenly.

I dipped the chicken in my seasoned egg, rolled each piece until totally coated in crushed rinds, and laid them on a foil lined baking sheet. I thought about covering them with the sauce and cheese and baking... but hubby didn't buy me the rubber cheese that you can bake an hour. He bought the good stuff. That required more thought, and trust me, my brain at the end of this day was hurting badly.

But I realized I could bake the chicken, almost all the way, and then add the good stuff. So I did.

This was absolutely fabulous. I mean soooo delicious. Savory sauce and fresh Mozarella, all creamy and browned and a crunchy coating on the chicken that stayed crisp. Holy moly. Word of caution, we had one leftover and I so looked forward to reheating it for today's lunch. I did it in the microwave. NO NO NO. Seems if you put pork rinds in the microwave they become hard as a rock. Hard to chew doesn't begin to cover it. So, don't nuke the leftovers. In fact, just eat it all so there are no leftovers.

Looks almost as good as it tasted.

1 egg
1 tablespoon heavy cream
1 tablesoon plus 1 teaspoon fresh basil
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons Onion Powder or flakes
3 chicken breasts, skinned and boneless
1 bag fried pork rinds
1 Ball of fresh Mozzarella, sliced
About 1/2 cup Tomato sauce (I recommend a good garlic one)

Butterfly the Chicken Breasts so you have 6 full pieces.
Whisk the egg, cream, 1 tb of Basil, and 1 tsp each of the garlic and onion together in a shallow bowl.
With a rolling pin, and the unopened bag of rinds, smash the bag with the rolling pin until the rinds are finely crushed. This definitely takes the edge off a hard day. Trust me. Pour the crushed rinds onto a large plate and mix in the remaining basil, garlic and onion. 

Line a cookie tray with foil, and grease. Preheat the oven to 350. 

Dip each piece of chicken in the egg, then roll in the crushed rinds until well coated and place on the tray. Bake chicken 35 minutes, then remove from oven, place rack on the level for broiling and set oven to broil. Spoon sauce onto each piece of chicken, and top with cheese. Then place the tray back in the oven and broil about 10 minutes more until cheese is melted and golden brown. 

Serve with something green.

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