Tuesday: What’s for Dinner?

The weather outside has me wanting to hibernate. In Toronto, we are still frosting at night! Yes, in the middle of May there is a brisk chill in the air, and it can make you a little sad. Have no fear! I bring to you a dish that makes any melancholy spirit joyful once again! How about some “Southern-Style Chicken and Waffles?” I was inspired by the craving for fried chicken, and found this recipe during my research. Check it out:

Southern-Style Chicken and Waffles

SOUTHERN-STYLE CHICKEN AND WAFFLES

INGREDIENTS

FOR THE BRINE

  • 2 chicken breasts boneless, skinless
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons hot sauce – such as Crystal

FOR FRYING THE CHICKEN

  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup cornmeal
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • canola or peanut oil for frying

FOR THE WAFFLES

  • 1 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons double acting baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups buttermilk well shaken
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 4 tablespoons butter melted
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese shredded
  • 1 bunch scallions sliced, white and pale green parts only
  • 1 tablespoons minced chives

GARNISH (OPTIONAL)

  • Maple syrup
  • chives minced
  • cheddar cheese shredded

INSTRUCTIONS

FOR THE BRINE

  • Place a large piece of plastic wrap on the counter. Place one chicken breast at a time in the center of the plastic wrap and fold half the plastic over the top of the chicken. Use the flat side of a meat mallet to pound the chicken to an even 1/2″ thickness. Set aside.
  • In a zip lock baggie, add the buttermilk and hot sauce, seal the bag and massage the ingredients together. Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper and add them to the brine. Seal the bag. Let the chicken marinate in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours or overnight.

TO FRY THE CHICKEN

  • Preheat the oven to 250°.
  • Remove the chicken from the refrigerator half an hour before you start to fry. This is so that the chicken isn’t ice cold when you put it in the fryer — which would dramatically reduce the heat of the oil and cause the chicken to soak up the grease, instead of frying in it.
  • Set up two shallow bowls for dredging. In one bowl, whisk together the flour, cornmeal, paprika, cayenne pepper, salt and black pepper. Add the buttermilk to the other bowl.
  • Slice the chicken breasts into 1″ wide strips.
  • In a medium heavy bottom skillet or dutch oven, heat about 1″ canola or peanut oil over medium to medium high heat, until its between 350°-375°.
  • Working in batches, dip chicken strips in buttermilk, then into flour mixture – back into the buttermilk and finally into the flour mixture. Tap off excess flour and gently place chicken strips into the hot oil. Do not crowd the pan — only cook 3-4 strips of chicken at a time. Fry for 6-8 minutes, turning occasionally with tongs until the chicken is crispy and a deep golden brown. Transfer cooked chicken to a baking sheet lined with paper towels to drain. Place the baking sheet in the oven to keep chicken warm.

FOR THE WAFFLES

  • In a large bowl combine flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Whisk together and set aside.
  • In a smaller bowl add buttermilk, eggs, butter and maple syrup. Whisk thoroughly to combine. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir until just mixed. Stir in the cheddar cheese, sliced scallions and chives.
  • To make the waffles, preheat the waffle iron. Lightly coat with vegetable spray if necessary. Scoop batter onto the center of the waffle iron. Close the lid and bake until browned and crisp, about 5-7 minutes. Place waffles on a baking sheet and keep warm in the oven while you continue cooking the rest of the batter.
  • To serve: Stack 2-3 waffles on a plate topped by 2-3 strips of chicken, maple syrup, shredded cheese and chives.

*Recipe taken from garlicandzest.com

I got you with the picture didn’t I? Well, there’s only one way to tell if they taste as delicious as they look;) Do you know what pairs well with Chicken and Waffles? A sweet bubbly wine and a Netflix series. I’m watching a limited series called, “Unorthodox,” and it is a serious tear-jerker. It is about a young Ultra-Orthodox Jewish girl from Williamsburg Brooklyn, who runs from her arranged marriage to Berlin, Germany in search of a new life. It is a bitter-sweet story that will definitely have you captivated while you enjoy fried chicken and waffles for sure!

Make sure you get that workout in before you settle in with the remote. We are still responsible for having those beach bodies toned and ready in time for the sun! Happy Tuesday everyone!

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