Sweet 'n Spicy Crunchy Crumb-Coated Chicken

Sweet 'n Spicy Crunchy Crumb-Coated Chicken

I love a good challenge, so when the folks at Honey Bunches of Oats asked me if I'd like to adapt or create a recipe using their product, I decided to create my own masterpiece.

Ingredients

  • I love a good challenge, so when the folks at Honey Bunches of Oats asked me if I'd like to adapt or create a recipe using their product, I decided to create my own masterpiece.
  • Apparently, everyone's mom used some kind of cereal to coat chicken. Except mine. It was never part of her repertoire, but I think it's a pretty great idea. So the first trial batch of cereal-coated chicken was left fairly plain, so I could decide what direction to take next.
  • Second batch was flavored with spices I use in barbecue sauce, and it included some lemon flavoring to give it a little tartness. I thought barbecue flavors would go well with the slight sweetness from the cereal. The result was good, but not perfect. Something was missing.
  • The final piece of the puzzle was cumin. It doesn't make this taste like Mexican chicken, but the cumin adds a slightly smoky savoriness that rounded out all the other flavors perfectly.
  • Oh, but that's not all. I used this same breading on pork, which was very good, by the way. But then I decided I liked it better on chicken. So I made more chicken.
  • But of course, part of being a blogger is taking photos of the food. Oops, we ate it all before I got photos. I made it again and the lighting was terrible. I took pictures but they looked dull. Which isn't so mad for tomato soup, but not so great for crunchy chicken.
  • Finally, the last batch (because I'm out of cereal now!) was made and photographed and eaten. I served it as an entree with rice mixed with spinach and a little lime, and leftovers made terrific sandwiches with a lettuce, tomato, and a little bit of mayonnaise.
  • This would also work well with tomato sauce and some melted cheese on top, like a chicken parmesan. Or sliced and served on a salad. Or stuffed into a tortilla and topped with salsa and guacamole. It's good hot or cold. Trust me, I know. I might have snuck a little nibble as a late-night snack.
  • But I'm still not tired of eating it. It's that good.
  • Chicken and rice ... so nice!
  • When you make this, consider your paprika. This includes both smoked and regular paprika, but the regular could be sweet paprika, sharp paprika, or half-sharp. The sharpness refers to the level of spiciness - paprika is ground peppers, after all. I found that the half-sharp gave it a nice little hint heat without making it a super-spicy dish. But use what you like - or what you have.
  • If you want to amp up the heat, you could add a little cayenne pepper. Start with 1/4 teaspoon, and add more if you think you need it.
  • I used the plan Honey Bunches of Oats cereal for this recipe, but I'm sure it would also work with the version with almonds.
  • Sweet 'n Spicy Crunchy Crumb Coated Chicken
  • For the crumb mix:
  • Stack 'o Crunchy Chicken
  • 4 cups Honey Bunches of Oats cereal
  • 2 teaspoons paprika (I used half-sharp, but sweet is fine)
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
  • 1 teaspoon True Lemon or Fruit Fresh
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • For the chicken:
  • 3-4 chicken boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup all purpose flour (more, as needed)
  • 1 large egg
  • Olive oil or vegetable oil, for cooking
  • To make the crumb mix
  • Combine all of the ingredients in your food processor and pulse until you have crumbs - but don't process too much. You want crumbs, not flour.
  • Transfer the crumbs to a suitable storage container. This makes enough for several batches of chicken, but since all the ingredients are dry, it stores well between uses.
  • To make the chicken:
  • You can see how crunchy it is!
  • If the chicken breasts are large, cut them in half. Place the chicken breasts, one at a time in a plastic bag. Use the flat side of a meat mallet to pound the breasts to an even thickness. You can make them a little thinner, if you like, but don't keep pounding until you've shredded them.
  • Yes, I know it's fun to whap them, but you have to have at least a little restraint. Flatten all the chicken breasts in the same way.
  • Set up a breading station with three flat bowls or deep plates, with flour in one, the egg in another, and about a cup of the crumb mix in the third. You can always add more, if needed.
  • Add about 2 tablespoons of water to the egg and beat lightly, just to combine. If you need to coat 4 larger chicken breasts, you might need a second egg, but start with one, You can crack another one later if you really need it.
  • Coat each piece of chicken in the flour first, then dip in the egg, then coat with the crumbs. As you finish coating the pieces, you can place them on a wire rack or baking sheet.
  • Heat about 2 tablespoons of oil in a large pan on medium heat. Or, if you have a lot of chicken and don't want to cook in batches, use two pans. When the oil is hot - but not smoking - add the pieces of chicken to the pan.
  • See those crumbs? Good snackin'!
Read the whole recipe on Cookistry