Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Another yummy chicken dinner

Cordell my sweet, this one is for you!

We eat a lot of chicken in this family... so I have a lot of chicken recipes to use and try and then send out into blogland. This recipe is one I keep modifying based on the ingredients I have on hand, so each time it's a little different... I hope you like it. The prep work is messy and extensive but well worth it. Plan for about an hour in the kitchen.
Ingredients: This will feed about 3 people
1 chicken breast cut into 1 1/2 inch cubes per person (I've also cut the chicken into 1 inch strips, that's yumm-o also)
2 cups buttermilk (can also use plain yogurt)
Entire box/canister of Italian bread crumbs (Panko can also be used wonderfully, the whole bag. Just omit the Parm!)
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon granulated onion powder
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon sugar
3 flat bottomed pans (like 8x8 brownie pan) for each mixture
Canola oil or grape seed oil (A lot as you will be making chicken in batches)
Extra grated Parmesan
Paper towels

Put the chicken pieces in the buttermilk and put in fridge to marinate for at least 30 minutes while prepping everything else. (Making a salad, cooking pasta, garlic bread, green beans, etc.)

In the flat and wide containers, put the buttermilk/chicken, the flour mixture and the breadcrumb mixture with buttermilk in the center.

THIS IS MESSY! Just a warning... :-)

Preheat canola oil in dutch oven or 12 inch wide skillet. Can be cast iron, non-stick, whatever you've got. You need just enough oil to coat the bottom of the pan and up the sides 1 inch. I set my oven to a medium temperature and wait for the oil to get warm rather than turn it up too high and risk burning the chicken.

You'll do this process three times so prepare to wash your hands often.

Take 1/3 of the chicken out of the buttermilk and dredge it in the flour mixture. Once coated in flour, dip it back into the buttermilk quickly and then into the breadcrumb mixture. I can usually do about 3-5 pieces at a time. Put these in the frying pan and repeat until all the pieces (the 1/3 of the chicken) are cooking. Usually this takes up the bottom of the pan.


Turn pieces over so that other side cooks. Since they are cut up, they go quickly. With tongs or a bamboo skimmer, put cooked pieces of chicken onto paper towels and sprinkle Parmesan cheese on them.
You can leave the chicken here at this point or put it on a tinfoil covered sheet in a warm oven.
Add oil to the pan as needed and repeat process until all chicken is done.
Plate chicken on top of the pasta of your choosing and cover with marinara sauce. Sprinkle with additional Parmesan cheese. A salad and some sauteed green beans on the side with warm rolls or garlic toast to round out the meal would be perfect!
SIDENOTE: This chicken is a great snack item, a salad topper, great with a plum sauce glaze and jasmine rice (when done with Panko)... and the munchkins will eat it too! You can also spice it up by adding cayenne or chipotle to the flour and breadcrumb mixtures. Ground Ginger if going for an Asian dish... once you get the basic fried chicken thing down, let your imagination invent new ways to enjoy the chicken.
Okay, now I'm hungry...!