November 27, 2013

Slow parmigiana

A slightly-faffy slow-cooker recipe, though faff that can be faffed in your own time rather than when hungry. Say, when listening to pop master.

First, locate your slow cooker. There is a good chance it was put in a random cupboard in the boiler last timeyou had a temper tantrum about no space in the kitchen. (And my forgotten waffle maker, too! Must make waffles.) Good old trusty slow cooker, with its very 1970s design, has been with me since university (at least 13 houses).
Slice some aubergine, ignoring any silly children who claim it is not nice. Place in the bottom of the cooker, which you might want to wipe some oil over first to stop them sticking. If you don’t it doesn’t matter, just more soaking overnight.

Chop chicken into chunks. Breast is really best but if you are late to the shop and (ahem) they only have one skinless breast, one skin-on breast, some thighs and a supreme (what is a supreme?) then just improvise with what you’ve got. Dip each chunk into seasoned flour then egg beaten with a drop of water, then breadcrumbs. I’ve done it with the panko type but I like dried bought wholemeal ones best. Fry them a bit: not enough to cook through but just to seal the coating so it doesn’t float off later. Pile on top of the aubergines.

Pour over a bottle of passata. You can add fancy stuff here – garlic, oregano, wine, vinegar maybe. Or not. Put on lid and turn on cooker. I have some grasp of the controls: low is for long cooking, high for slow cooking in a hurry (?) and auto is the one everybody uses.

IMG_487915 minutes before you want to eat, open it and give it a bit of a poke. Cover with grated cheese – I like a proper strong cheddar because slow cookers can make food a bit bland, but I suspect mozzarella would be more correct. As so many who have gone before, I forgot to photograph it cooked.


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