Three Cheese Macaroni

Comfort Food: Lasagna

BBQ Grilled Cheese

Pork Sandwiches

Parmigiano Reggiano Chicken and Waffles

Friday, September 21, 2012

If you're obsessed with watching cooking channels, you'll totally know what I'm talking about here. If not, this might be a new concept. It's chicken and waffles. Together. Married together with sweet, sticky honey.
It's delicious.

I was sold when dining out in North Carolina and got served this giant Belgian waffle with two pieces of perfectly crusted chicken and honey on the side. The girl across the table from me was like 'OMG - I could never eat all of that'. My pregnant-self said to self 'watch me'. And yes, I ate the whole meal and it was wonderful. My husband was impressed. At least - I think he was?

My urge to recreate this masterpiece has been intense lately and well, I had to find a way to incorporate cheese. Because I always need to find a way to incorporate cheese into my dishes. It took a little tweaking, but I got it. I got it good.

The trick? Finely grated Parmigiano Reggiano. Lots of it. It adds a saltiness and a savory edge to the waffles. And the chicken? Who doesn't love deep-fried chicken? With cheese.

I'll stop writing now and get to the goodness:

Parmigiano Reggiano Crusted Deep-Fried Chicken

Serves 2

1 pound chicken drumsticks and wings, skin on

2 cups buttermilk
1/2 cup shredded Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 eggs, beaten
3-5 cups vegetable or peanut oil, for frying

In a large saucepan, place chicken and cover with milk. Over medium-high heat, bring milk to a boil, then lower heat to a medium-low. Simmer the milk until the chicken is cooked through entirely, about 30 minutes. Once cooked through, transfer chicken to a cooling rack and allow to cool for about 15-20 minutes. Pat dry using a paper towel.

While waiting for chicken to cool, heat the vegetable oil in either a deep fryer or Dutch oven on high heat to about 325*F.

Combine shredded Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, flour, Italian seasoning and black pepper in a large zip bag. Have the 2 beaten eggs in a medium bowl, set aside.

Place the pieces of chicken in the bag, close and shake until the chicken is completely coated (this is where kids can help). Dip the coated chicken into the beaten eggs, one at a time. Place the chicken back into the dry mixture and shake for one last coating.

Carefully place each piece of chicken into the 325*F oil and fry until the crust turns golden in color, about 1 minute per side. Remove from oil and place on the cooling rack, lined with a paper towel.

Serve hot.

Whole Wheat Parmigiano Reggiano Waffles

Makes about 6, 8-inch waffles

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup finely grated Parmigiano Reggiano
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons sugar
3 eggs, separated
2 tablespoons butter, melted
2 cups buttermilk, room temperature

In a large bowl, combine all of the dry ingredients and mix until fully combined. In a second medium-size bowl, beat together the egg yolks, melted butter and buttermilk until well blended. Combine the two mixtures and stir just until combined. Do not over mix!

In a third bowl, beat egg whites until they form medium stiff peaks. Gently fold into the waffle mixture. Trust me, this part is worth it.

Turn on your waffle iron to a medium-high heat. Coat the inside with butter.

Once the waffle iron is ready, pour about 3/4 cup of the waffle mixture in and close. Wait patiently for your fluffy waffle to cook.

If preparing in advance, have your oven set to 200*F and place cooked waffles on a cookie sheet in the oven. Not only will they crisp up a little more, but they'll be warm.

Serve with Parmigiano Reggiano Crusted Chicken Drummies drizzled with buckwheat honey.


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