Sunday, June 21, 2009

Chicken Parmesan a la Kludge

Wikipedia describes a Kludge as:

A kludge (or kluge) is a workaround, an ad hoc engineering solution, a clumsy or inelegant solution to a problem, typically using parts that are cobbled together.

How could one cobble together a fancy Italian dish with random stuff?

  1. Lower your standards for Italian food, dramatically.

  2. Bake frozen chicken fingers according to their instructions.

    • I like white meat chicken fingers and since there’s no such thing as ritzy chicken fingers the ceiling is pretty low in “springing for the good stuff”.

  3. While the chicken fingers are baking microwave 1-2 cups of spaghetti sauce in a microwave safe container. I use a pyrex measuring cup. Know that hot tomato sauce will corrode tupperware.

    • Be sure to cover (not seal!) your container with something like a paper towel so it doesn’t splatter.

    • Nuke for a minute or so, stir, check the sauce temperature, not the container temperature.

    • Repeat until hot.

    • Make sure it’s good spaghetti sauce like Prego. If it’s not you can try adding powered garlic, powdered onion, allspice, pepper, etc. But you’re not going to make it awesome. Just buy the good stuff up front.

  4. Once the chicken fingers are done baking, divide evenly on your finest plastic kitchenware.

  5. Cover them uniformly with shredded mozzarella or provolone.

  6. Cover that with piping hot pasta sauce to melt the cheese.

  7. Optionally, cover with grated parmesan. Given the name “chicken paremsan” I have know idea why this is an optional step.

Serves an arbitrary number of people, depending on how much stuff you buy and how much your people eat.

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