Sweet, Spicy + Savoury

This post is sponsored by Pepto-Bismol.

Brunch is one of the most important weekend rituals in my household - I know, sounds indulgent but it truly is the best time spent with family and friends. Early weekday mornings are the norm for my wife and I - we own and operate our own business and shuttle our kids between school and daycare on the regular. Our busy evenings, stuffed with gymnastics, boxing, swimming lessons and dance lessons leave us little time to enjoy long, leisurely dinners every night. When Sunday’s roll around, a mid-morning meal is  the focal point of our weekend, where we all congregate in the kitchen and prepare a feast - and trust me, we do not hold back. 

 

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A tried and tested, family-fave is buttermilk fried chicken and waffles with spicy and sweet maple syrup. Over the years, I’ve perfected the art of fried chicken making it a touch spicier each time with a special blend of my favourite seasonings. Although there are a few extra steps to this juicy, crispy delicious fried chicken, it’s a labour of love and we love to share the experience of cooking and eating together. The spices in the breading add a little kick and the hot syrup, made from locally sourced maple, gives it that sweet + spicy sticky glaze that we’ve come to crave. The best part of this recipe is that most of the ingredients already live in your pantry - feel free to experiment with the seasonings by switching up the spices. 

 

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Sometimes I can be a bit heavy-handed with the hot stuff - I like to layer the different spicy elements but even a few drops can make the difference between pleasant heat and a pay-for-it-later burn. It’s hard to stop, once you dive in, but I’ve definitely succumbed to the spice on a few occasions - symptoms like heartburn, nausea, upset stomach and diarrhea can hit when you least expect them. These mealtimes are precious though, and our fried chicken isn’t the only tried and tested thing in our kitchen. Pepto-Bismol has come to our rescue more than once - it’s not always on the menu but we like to be prepared. At the first sign of an upset stomach, we reach for Pepto-Bismol to fix it fast. To ensure this product is right for you, always read and follow the label. 

 


BUTTERMILK FRIED CHICKEN W/SPICY MAPLE SYRUP + GRILLED CORN WAFFLES

Ingredients 

BUTTERMILK CHICKEN

  • 4 chicken thighs 
  • 4 drum sticks
  • 2L chicken stock
  • 1L buttermilk
  • 1/4 cup of your favourite hot sauce 
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp chili powder
  • 2 tbsp garlic powder
  • 2 tbsp crushed fennel seed
  • 3L vegetable oil
  • 3 green onions, sliced on the bias

SPICY MAPLE SYRUP 

  • 2 cups good maple syrup 
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 1 jalapeno, sliced
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne

GRILLED CORN WAFFLES

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour 
  • 1 tsp salt 
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp granulated sugar 
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups warm milk 
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup grilled corn 

Method 

In a large pot, bring chicken stock to a simmer and poach chicken for 30 minutes.

While the chicken is poaching, whisk the buttermilk and hot sauce together in a shallow baking dish and whisk the flour and spices in a separate, large mixing bowl - set both aside.

When the chicken is finished poaching and it juices run clear, carefully remove the pieces from the stock and place onto a resting rack to dry - allow the stock to cool and freeze for later use.

Once the chicken has dried and is slightly cooled, place pieces into the buttermilk mixture turning the chicken to ensure it is well coated - allow the pieces to soak for 10 minutes. 

Remove chicken from the buttermilk and place in the flour dredge, rubbing the chicken gently to ensure it’s coated well with the flour mixture.

Place breaded chicken piece back onto resting rack and repeat with all pieces of chicken.

Place another large pot onto low heat and fill 3/4 of the way with vegetable oil using a digital kitchen thermometer, slowly bring oil to 350 F - if oil becomes too hot, reduce slightly and reheat when you’re ready to cook the chicken.

While the oil heats, place all of the ingredients for the spicy maple syrup into a small sauce pan - bring the syrup just to a boil then turn it off and remove from heat.

Heat waffle iron according to manufacturers settings and mix waffle batter by whisking the dry ingredients in a large bowl and the eggs with milk, butter and vanilla in a smaller, separate bowl - pour the liquid mixture into the dry mixture and stir just to combine - add grilled corn and stir well to combine.

Check the teperature of the oil and, working in small batches (1-2 pcs), fry the chicken until golden brown and crisp - keeping in mind that the meat is fully cooked from poaching - using tongs, carefully remove from the oil to paper towel and season with a sprinkle of kosher salt.

While the chicken is frying, ladle waffle batter into the hot waffle iron and cook waffles until golden brown and crispy. 

Once all the chicken is fried and waffles are cooked, plate on a large platter and drizzle with the spicy, infused maple syrup. Use your hands, dig in and enjoy!!

 

 

This blog post is a paid promotion in partnershjp with Pepto-Bismol. The opinions and advice that I share are my own and I only work with companies I use and trust in my daily life and have used prior to being contacted.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Erin Neal