“My idea of bliss is to wake up on a Monday morning knowing you haven’t a single engagement for the entire week. You are cradled in a white paper cocoon tied up with typewriter ribbon.” – Edna Ferber

Mondays. How quickly they seem to come around. I really don’t mind Mondays – it’s just that Tuesday follows Monday and that’s when the work week starts for me.

Mondays are a great day for me to catch up on everything and get everything prepared for the next week with very few distractions. Also – it’s the day I prepare a new meal to test out on the peanut gallery.

Today’s meal will be:

Chicken Parmesan Casserole

(recipe adapted from foodwishes.com)

  • 2 Tbsp of olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • hot red pepper flakes, to taste
  • 3-4 boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into bite size pieces
  • 2 cups of your favorite marinara sauce
  • ¼ cup chopped basil
  • 8 oz shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 4 oz shredded parmesan cheese
  • 1 (5 oz) package of garlic croutons

Preheat oven to 350°.

You start by pouring olive oil into a baking dish (the size determined by how much chicken you have). Next crush your garlic into dish. Mix garlic in and evenly spread on the bottom.

Sprinkle with hot pepper flakes.

Now place your cut up chicken in dish. The original recipe had it as whole chicken breasts but chicken breasts are so big nowadays that I think one is too big a serving so at least halving them will make the recipe go farther.
Of course, you can always leave them whole if you’re feeding hungry hippos or you could even cut chicken up into smaller pieces. (I think next time – time permitting – I’ll cut into 1 in. pieces)

******note – there has been a few problems of the chicken not being completely cooked because each oven is different so I would definitely cut chicken into bite size pieces and not just halved or whole to eliminate this problem.

Pour marinara sauce evenly over chicken and top with basil.

Layer with half the mozzarella and parmesan cheese. (I also added a sprinkling of dry italian seasoning to both cheese layers)

Top with croutons (I crushed them in the bag with my hands a little first) and the remaining cheese. (Next time, I will crush even more)

Bake uncovered for 30-40 minutes. You want to make sure chicken is done, so if the top starts to brown a little too much, cover with foil.

Here you go – Chicken Parmesan Casserole – serve with a salad and Parmesan Knots (see below).

For the Parmesan knots you’ll need:

  • 1 tablespoon of melted butter
  • ¼ cup oil
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 Tablespoons of grated parmesan (the kind in the green can)
  • 2 teaspoons dry italian seasoning
  • 1 can refrigerated buttermilk bisuits

Take each biscuit and pull/roll out into a rope, tie in a knot, tuck ends under and place on a foil lined, Pam sprayed baking sheet.

Bake at 400° for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown.

In a small bowl, combine all ingredients

Brush mixture onto warm rolls.

Now you have a perfectly simple, perfectly good Italian Dinner.

Thumbs up from the peanut gallery!