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Keep a few prepared chicken breasts in single zipper freezer bags, frozen singly.  They thaw easily, and you can have any number of chicken dishes fixed in a hurry.  Here's one that's great with pasta, rice, a stuffing casserole or with pasta.  Try it with Basic Tomato Sauce.

Quick & Easy Chicken Cutlets

2 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts or 8 prepared chicken cutlets
salt and black pepper  as desired
1 large egg
olive oil
1 cup fine cracker or dry bread crumbs
1 cup shredded low-fat mozzarella cheese, or 8 slices of cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

To prepare chicken cutlets, put chicken breasts into halves down the middle.  Place each half on a cutting board.  Hold down with the flat of your palm.  With a very sharp chef's knife, or boning or fillet knife, cut into two fillets or cutlets.  You'll be able to feel the knife and if careful, will have no change of cutting yourself.  Continue until you have 8 cutlets.

Place each cutlet between two pieces of wax paper or plastic wrap.  Whack it until it is uniformly thin, perhaps 3/8".  You can use a wooden rolling pin, a heavy skillet or the side of a heavy cleaver - whatever works.

Lay out cutlets, sprinkle with salt and black pepper.   Beat egg in a shallow bowl.  Sprinkle a large plate with a little of the crumbs.  Dip each cutlet in the egg, shake off excess, then dip into crumbs, pressing a bit to be sure it's completely covered.  Lay out on plate.

Heat a little olive oil over medium heat until it shimmers.  Preheat broiler.  When skillet is hot, sauté cutlets (in a single layer) until slightly browned.  Turn and lightly  brown other side. 

Place on a cookie sheet.  Sprinkle each cutlet with mozzarella or place a slice of cheese on each one; if any hangs off, trim it and add to the center.  Sprinkle lightly with Parmesan.  Place on a lower rack under broiler just until the cheese melts.

Serving suggestion:  Prepare pasta with Basic Tomato Sauce.  Place a cutlet and some pasta on a plate.  Spoon a little tomato sauce over each cutlet, and over pasta to taste.  Pass Parmesan cheese for sprinkling.

The Sneaky Kitchen
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