Sunday, January 25, 2009

Sunday's Best Oven Fried Chicken

Lest you thought we existed on only desserts and snacks, here's a great tried & true chicken recipe for you. This chicken really isn't fried; it's baked in the oven. However, it does have that fried chicken taste. Once you get the hang of this recipe, it's fairly easy to make. The original recipe makes enough to feed a small army, so I cut the recipe in half. Feel free to use the original amounts, half it, or double it to suit your needs.

Sunday's Best Oven-Fried Chicken
3-1/2 to 4 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/2 C all purpose flour
1 t celery seeds
2 t onion powder
1 t paprika
2 T lemon pepper
1 T salt
1 T fresh chopped thyme
2 lg. eggs, room temperature
3/4 C buttermilk (I use plain skim milk w/ 1 T vinegar added)
One 16 oz. package seasoned bread stuffing mix, crushed (I put it in a large ziplock and whacked it with the rolling pin or the bottom of a heavy glass, but I think bread crumbs would work well, too)
1/2 C (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted

Adjust the baking rack to the center of the oven and preheat to 400ºF.

1. Rinse the chickens thoroughly under COLD water and pat dry with paper towels.
2. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, celery seeds, onion powder, paprika, lemon pepper, salt and thyme. Set aside.
3. Whisk the eggs and buttermilk together thoroughly. Pour into a shallow bowl.
4. Pour the crushed stuffing mix into a separate shallow bowl or large paper plate.
5. Pour the melted butter onto a baking sheet.
6. Dredge the chicken pieces in the seasoned flour mixture, then in the buttermilk mixture; thoroughly coat in the crushed stuffing mix.
7. Transfer chicken to the baking sheet and gently roll the pieces in the melted butter until lightly coated. (I use a 9" X 13" casserole dish)
8. Bake for 25-35 mins OR when the juices flow clear after a knife is inserted into the thickest part of the breast.
9. When the chicken is fully cooked, transfer the pieces to a platter lined with paper towels. Serve. Allow to cool to room temp before storing in fridge.

I use the Pepperidge Farm stuffing that comes in the large bag. This time I got sage and it tasted too much like turkey stuffing, so I might go with something different next time or try seasoned bread crumbs.

These taste great the next day, too!

If you use chicken tenders or smaller chicken breasts, cut your cooking time and check for doneness.

Don't skip the butter! This really does make the coating nice and crispy. Plus, who doesn't like the added taste the butter gives the finished product?!?