This dish definitely has a split personality and I love them both :). This is such a fun way to combine two classic Italian dishes together. I hope it inspires you to to mash up some of your favorites, too :)
BAKED ZITI TOPPED WITH CHICKEN PARMESAN
-1 lb Ziti pasta
-1 lb thinly sliced chicken breast
-1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs
-2 cups homemade or jarred tomato sauce
-1/4 cup Ricotta cheese
-1 tsp dry Parsley
-1 cup Mozzarella cheese, shredded
PREHEAT THE OVEN TO 350 DEGREES
- Cut the chicken breasts into strips. Lightly season them with salt, pepper and garlic powder and set them aside.
- In a small bowl, whisk the eggs and 2 tbs of water together. In another small bowl add the bread crumbs. Dip the chicken in the egg then bread crumbs until they are all coated.
- In a large frying pan, heat a few tbs of olive oil and fry the chicken until golden brown on both sides. Remove the chicken once done and drain on paper towels.
- Boil the pasta 2 minutes less that the suggested time on the package. Drain it and return it to the same pot. Add 1 1/2 cups of tomato sauce and stir. (Add more sauce if you want. I like to go heavier on the sauce when baking pasta so it doesn't dry out but its up to you!) Also, stir in about half a cup of mozzarella cheese.
- In a small bowl, combine the ricotta cheese, parsley, and about 2 tbs of Parmesan cheese.
- Transfer the pasta to a baking dish. Scoop some of the ricotta mixture up in a small spoon. With the spoon, make little holes in the pasta and place the ricotta cheese. Try to evenly spread the ricotta cheese out throughout the ziti.
- Place the chicken evenly on top of the ziti. Cover with the remaining tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. Bake loosely covered in tin foil for 45 minutes. Serve hot
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