Friday, October 9, 2009

Yummy! Healthy!

I've got a recipe for you!  This is my own recipe for homemade chicken fingers.  My children and husband LOVE them.  They could eat them several nights a week.  Guess what?  I use whole wheat flour to make them.  And they can be oven or pan fried in olive oil.  They are super easy, much healthier than the processed mystery chicken in the frozen foods aisle, and they are delicious.  So here you go:

I make these using the chicken tenderloins I buy in a large package at Aldi.  I defrost them, first.  This is about how much chicken it takes to feed my family of five dinner, plus have some leftover for B's lunch the next day.

While the chicken tenderloins are defrosting in the microwave, I prepare my whole wheat coating.  For this amount of chicken, I use about 3/4 cup of whole wheat flour.  I then add (dried/powdered) garlic, paprika, salt, pepper, parsley flakes, and basil (basil makes anything delicious).  I have no hard and fast measurements for these seasonings.  I do it according to whim.  If I want the chicken fingers to taste more Italian, I use more Italian seasonings.  If I want them spicy, I add more pepper and garlic, maybe even chili and cumin.  A tip: when using whole wheat, it is best to use more seasoning than you would with white flour.  This is how mine looks before mixing.

And after mixing well....

Next step is to get your eggs ready as part of the dipping process.  I prefer to use fake eggs (see below) since I don't have to worry about salmonella and cholesterol.  If you want the real deal, just beat two eggs well with a fork.  You could also choose to dip your chicken into milk.  Again, I prefer about 1/3 cup of egg substitute.
After preparing the egg dip, I pull out my large frying pan and put it on the stove.  I turn my stove on to medium low (my stove cooks prettty hot, you made need to adjust this according to the way your own stove works) and cover the bottom of the pan with olive oil.  While the oil is heating, I line up all my ducks in a row, so to speak:

I like to put everything in the order in which it will be dipped, just to save time and spare my stove and countertop from additional mess.  (Don't you love how shiny the stove looks today?)  So I put the bowls in order of chicken, egg dip, flour coating, and frying pan.  With the oil now hot in the pan, I begin to dip.
I dip each tenderloin into the egg substitute, then drop it in the flour mixture, coating it well on both sides.  Once coated, I throw it into the frying pan, where it is joined by other coated tenderloins until the pan is full.

I let them sizzle for approximately 4 minutes, then turn them.  They turn a beautiful golden brown color.
I let them cook for an additional 4 minutes on this side, then flip them 2 more times for approximately 2 minutes per side.  Before I take them out of the pan, I cut into the center of one, and make sure that it is cooke through.  I sometimes need to add a little oil to the pan during cooking, just so things don't dry out.  I repeat this process with the remaining tenderloins.  Here is a look at the finished chicken fingers:

Don't they look great?  The whole wheat flour gives them a slightly nutty flavor, and the other seasonings really add to that.  You can add a little chicken broth to the pan after they've cooked, to make a gravy from the drippings.  This is a must if you are serving these with mashed potatoes or biscuits.  Enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. They look absolutely delicious! I'll have to try em on my daughter and neglect to tell her that they're healthy!