Chicken and waffles are fun to serve for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Brining makes this fried chicken extra juicy, but if you are pressed for time, you can omit this step.
4 large to 6 small boneless chicken breasts, skin-on or skinless
4 cups water
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup kosher salt
2 cups flour
2 tbsp. garlic powder
2 tbps. paprika or smoked paprika
2 tbsp. chili powder
2 tbsp. dry mustard
2 tbsp. oregano
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
3 eggs, eggs beaten
1 cup buttermilk
Peanut oil, canola or vegetable oil, for frying
3 to 4 cups crushed cornflakes
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup cornmeal
2 tbsp. sugar
1 tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
2-1/2 cups buttermilk, room temperature
3 eggs, beaten, room temperature
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 tbsp. lemon zest (optional)
Spicy Maple Syrup
1 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup piri piri hot sauce or your favourite hot sauce, to taste
Blueberry Chutney (optional)
Strawberries, for garnishing (optional)
Slice chicken on the bias into 3 to 4 slices.
Combine water, brown sugar and salt for brine. Stir. When sugar and salt dissolves, add chicken pieces. Transfer to refrigerator and brine chicken for 1 to 2 hours. Drain chicken. Discard brine.
Combine flour, garlic powder, paprika, chili powder, dry mustard, oregano and salt and pepper, spices in a shallow dish or bowl. Set aside.
In another dish or bowl, combine eggs and buttermilk. Set aside.
Dredge chicken pieces in the flour mixture. Shake off any excess. Dip in buttermilk mixture. And then coat in crushed cornflakes. Repeat and dip chicken pieces again in buttermilk mixture and then again in cornflakes.
Heat oil over medium heat in Dutch oven. Add enough oil to come up about 2 to 3-inches up the side of the pan. Heat to 350 degrees F.
In batches, add chicken to hot oil. Cook chicken until juices run clear and no longer pink, flipping once during the cooking, about 4 to 6 minutes, depending on thickness. Transfer to paper towel-baking sheet or plate to drain excess fat.
In a large bowl, combine flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
Whisk together buttermilk, eggs, melted butter and lemon zest in another bowl. Pour wet ingredients into dry and whisk just to combine. Let waffle batter rest for 5 to 10 minutes before using.
Preheat waffle iron according to manufacturer’s instructions.
Ladle or pour enough batter into waffle iron to cover about two-thirds of the grid surface. Close the lid. Cook until steam stops emerging from the waffle iron, and waffles are golden brown and crisp, about 4 minutes. Makes 10 to 12 waffles depending on the size of the waffle iron.
Spicy Maple Syrup
Heat maple syrup and hot saucepan until warm.
Serve chicken with waffles, with Spicy Maple Syrup, Blueberry Chutney. Garnish with strawberries, if desired.
Yield: 4 to 6 servings.