Well, hello dear readers. Long time, no see. I’ve been absent for quite a while now after my divorce, so I appreciate the few of you that have stuck around and check in on me from time to time.
A lot has changed since I announced mine and Frank’s divorce back in December of 2013. When I started this blog, Frank and I were living in the Nashville area. Then, we moved to the San Francisco Bay Area for Frank to start chiropractic school at Life West Chiropractic College, and almost a year ago I moved from the San Francisco Bay to the Tampa Bay. Talk about a cross-country move!!
Well, as much as I loved the San Francisco Bay, I’m loving the Tampa Bay more! What is better for mending the wounds in your life than perpetual sunshine and white-sand beaches? And the people here are just wonderful—friendly, generous, relaxed, social. The friends I’ve made since moving here have been the best addition to my life. I’m so thankful for each and every one of them. They’ve enriched my life tremendously!
Oh! And did I mention I have a house? It’s a quaint little two bedroom, two bath with a granite countertops in the kitchen and bathrooms. I have a huge yard, and when I moved in, there was absolutely NO landscaping, so I’ve been working every weekend hauling rocks, digging in the sand (because it’s sand, not dirt here), pulling weeds, cutting roots out, leveling the earth, picking up sticks, trimming trees, and planting native plants and flowers! I’m turning into quite the green thumb! And I have another addition to the yard coming soon!! (It’s a surprise.)
So about maple fried chicken…
The big thing here in the Tampa Bay is BRUNCH. Everywhere does brunch on Sundays, and that means bottomless mimosas everywhere you look. One Sunday, my friends took me to this place called Ella’s that does Soul Food Sunday’s. Wouldn’t you know it, they had chicken and waffles on the menu. That’s the thing these days, you know. Well! I was craving chicken and waffles the other day and thought to myself “I want to make the healthy organic version of that…but I don’t have a waffle maker….Hmmmm.” So instead of doing waffles, I dipped the chicken in maple syrup instead of egg wash, and voila! …Hahaha this was the compromise I made with myself for not having waffles, and the chicken turned out great!
Maple Fried Chicken
Avocado Oil, Duck Fat, or Tallow
Preheat oven to 375˚F.
I used a whole chicken cut up in pieces, but you can really use whatever kind of chicken meat you want. The only think that will change is the last step when you bake it. I enjoyed the chicken breasts cut into 1 inch cubes best because it was like chicken nuggets!
Anyway, take your chicken pieces and dredge them in flour. Cover allllll that up with flour. Good job.
Next, dip your floured chicken pieces in maple syrup. Dunk them all the way under.
Then, immediately transfer to your bowl of bread crumbs (Or do flour again) and press the bread crumbs on with your fingers. They won’t stay on super well at first, so you might have to press more on before you put it in the pan.
Heat up a large skillet on med-high heat with coconut oil 1/4″ deep in the pan. I covered mine so it didn’t pop oil everywhere. If you have an actual REAL fryer, then I’m totally jelly beans because I super wish I had a fryer. Haha.
So when the oil is good and hot, lay your chicken pieces in the pan and be sure not to over-crowd. When they are browned on one side, flip them so they brown on the opposite side.
Then transfer to a baking pan and bake for 12 minutes for nugget-sized pieces, 20 minutes for wings, and 25 minutes for legs and thighs.
Serve with maple syrup for dipping or any of your other favorite sauces! Enjoy!
***Next week, I think I’m going to get some wild caught Gulf shrimp from the market and do coconut shrimp. Uh YES!