Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Chicken Nuggets

So my husband said to me the other day that he wondered if we could save money by making our own chicken nuggets. Well, if you know me, I took the challenge. I found a recipe for "Chick-fil-a" nuggets and set about trying it out. My brother raises non-GMO chickens and happened to be butchering them today so I went and got two. I came home and cut them up, put the legs and wings in the freezer for a later meal and boiled the carcasses for all the little bits I couldn't get off. That was enough to make chicken salad for lunch tomorrow. I cut the rest into bite size pieces and marinated them in pickle juice for about 45 minutes. The recipe says at least an hour, but I was pleased with the 45 min. time. The fam really seemed to enjoy them and I now have at least 4-5 meals of chicken tenders in the freezer. I'm guessing I'll bake them in the oven like I do the store bought kind. 400 degrees for about 20 minutes. 
Price comparison: the chicken cost $25 but I got 5-6 meals and a 2 person lunch from that. Not really much cheaper than store bought considering how long I slaved over the stove :) but I know my family will be eating healthier and I proved I could do it. 
The recipe came from Food.com and I didn't have paprika or peanut oil so I used cumin and canola oil. OF COURSE I did not use the MSG and I pan fried them. 
4 chicken breasts
1 cup pickle juice (great way to use up that empty jar of pickles!)
2 eggs
1 cup flour
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon msg (Accent, leave it out if you prefer)
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon basil
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
peanut oil

Pound chicken breasts till they are thin enough for your taste. (I find a lot of breasts are really too thick for a sandwich so I pound out the thick part a little) Cut into chunks if you want nuggets.
Place chicken in plastic bag with pickle juice and marinate for an hour (preferably overnight).
Mix up eggs in seperate bowl for the egg wash.
Mix flour and remaining spices in another shallow bowl.
Remove chicken from the pickle juice maranade and drain well. Dip into the egg wash and then into the flour mixture.
Fry the chicken however you prefer here. I pan fried mine in a few tablespoons of oil and it turned out fine. Chick-Fil-A deep fries theirs in a pressure cooker, so you can try that if you are feeling adventurous.

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