Crispy Baked "Fried" Chicken

Happy Inauguration Day! In honor of this historic day, I bring you Fried Chicken! What could be more American than that?

I was flipping through my February/March issue of Food Network magazine the other day when I stumbled upon Cat Cora’s Crispy Baked “Fried” Chicken. I have nearly completely modified the recipe from its original state to accommodate the use of chicken tenders instead of bone-in, skin-on chicken pieces and to make it a little more Points-friendly, but I think I am still true to the Iron Chef’s recipe.

Despite appearances, these really were not burnt. They were actually quite tender and perfectly cooked. After baking the strips as directed below, I spray them with cooking spray and broiled them for a few minutes. I was trying to brown them a little because they looked a little dull, but I ended up making them a little too brown. They still tasted awesome, but the looks definitely suffered!

These were really good and are definitely something we will make again. The buttermilk bath really makes the dish giving the chicken tons of flavor. I was surprised we both liked them as much as we did because they are quite mustard-y, but Ryan even commented that “The mustard really makes them” meaning they would have been bland without it. Considering less than a year ago neither of us could stomach the thought of mustard, we’ve come a long way. Admittedly, though, I did have a mini freak out when the mustard splattered out of the jar and spray my hand. Ew. I have resigned myself to eating mustard in dishes, but I’m still not cool with it touching me! For my tastes, I might cut back on the mustard a little next time, and add more salt, but otherwise these were definitely five stars (and tasted much better than they look!).

Crispy Baked “Fried” Chicken

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into strips
¼ cup all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
3 cups cornflakes
½ cup reduced fat buttermilk
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 tablespoons dijon mustard
1 ½ teaspoons paprika
¾ teaspoon ground sage

1. Preheat oven to 350. Place a rack in a roasting pan or on a baking sheet.

2. Rinse the chicken in cold water; pat dry. In a wide bowl or on a plate, season the flour with salt and pepper (about 1/4 tsp each). Dredge each chicken piece through the flour so it’s fully coated, tap against the bowl to shake off excess flour, and set aside. Discard the flour.

3. Crush the cornflakes by placing them in a big resealable plastic bag, carefully pressing the bag to push out the air. Seal up the bag (with as little air inside as possible) and run over the flakes with a rolling pin. Open the bag and pour the crushed flakes into a wide bowl or onto a plate.

4. In a large bowl (big enough to dredge the chicken pieces) , mix the buttermilk, cayenne, mustard, paprika, and sage. Give each floured chicken piece a god buttermilk bath then roll in the cornflake crumbs.

5. Arrange the chicken pieces on the rack and place in the hot oven. Cook for 25 to 30 minutes, until cooked through and crispy. The juices should run clear when the meat is pierced with a knife.

Source: February/March 2009 issue of Food Network magazine; “Cat Cora’s Crispy Baked ‘Fried’ Chicken”
4 servings | 5 POINTS


January 20, 2009. recipes.

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