Thursday, July 8, 2010

Do you want fries with that?

Last night was one of those nights - a little too much fried food for my stomach, but everything still tasted good going down.

The main dish for dinner last night was chicken fingers.  Home made chicken fingers are honestly better than anything in a restaurant, when made well anyway.  I've invented my own methods, but last night's were some of the best I've ever made.

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I start with frozen chicken tenders - thawed out of course.  Thaw out as many as you need but in our house with two grown-up eaters and 1 pint size eater, we usually need 6-8 tenders.

Once they are thawed and your ready to bread them, pat all the chicken pieces with a paper towel to dry them out.

Next, soak them for 2-4 minutes in buttermilk.  Yes, buttermilk!  Regular milk works fine, but buttermilk is so thick that it's the best.  If I use regular milk, I usually end up breading twice, but with buttermilk I only had to do it once.

While the chicken is soaking in buttermilk, get your flower dredge going.  I use regular flour but I happen to have some self-rising flower so I used that last night.  It was good.  I'll use it again.  In the flour I add my seasoning: salt, pepper, garlic salt, chili powder, something I've got called "fiesta" seasoning and anything else that sounds good.  GENEROUSLY add the flavor to your flower.

Once the dredge is mixed, the rest is simple.  Take the chicken out of the buttermilk and coat it with the flour.  Work in batches of 3-4 at a time so that the flour doesn't get all goopy on the chicken.  Once you've got 4 done, add them to the oil.

I use regular vegetable oil in a very hot skillet.  You don't need a lot of oil - you don't want to submerge the chicken.  Just enough oil to brown it one side at a time.

That's it.  Maybe one day I'll try some beer battering like most restaurants do, but until then, these are a crowd pleaser every time.

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