I can’t even begin to describe how much I am looking forward to shelving this week and bringing it to a final end.
There was something in the news about how this Monday, the first one in January after the new year, was notorious for being, the one day of the year to experience, the worst case of the Monday blues.
I think my inner karma secretary, just didn’t get the memo…
Because it was my Wednesday, that was epic.
One of those days that just kept on giving..one duddy thing after the other.
The final bad gift of the day, when I found our beloved fish “Doggy”…..floating.
Great…as if my sweet Tunie B. hasn’t had enough disappointment in her very short life!
How do I now, break this news, to my very sensitive and attached 4 year old?
Do I even tell her, or do I do a quick switcheroo?
Believe me, this was one of the more tougher decisions I have had to make as a parent.
I went back and forth, weighing the pros and cons about being honest with my child, about life and the doozys she can throw us.
But at the same time, I really just wanted to protect her from the sadness…
life’s little lesson could wait another day or year!
In the end, I chose to tell her about Doggy.
Because she is my kid….she sees everything, I mean there is nothing she doesn’t take notice of.
She would know that the new fish…was not her ..fish.
So I was honest, in the most gentlest of ways that I thought I could explain it to her…
The questions she had were a mile a minute, and I truthfully didn’t have all the answers.
But in the end..it was all good.
And tonight when I asked her what she would like me to make for Dinner with the Liebermans?
She said chicken….
“it was her and Doggies favorite food.”
extra crispy honey garlic chicken
I had found a recipe for crispy honey chicken in one of my American Test kitchen magazines a few months back. It has been sitting on top of a huge pile of cookbooks, whose many pages are folded down, to recipes I MUST try one day soon!
I refuse to put this pile away till I try these recipes out, because in the past when I shelved them, in an attempt to maintain order, I regretted it deeply. It seems I was doomed to never find those recipes again when I went looking.
I have too many cookbooks and magazines.
But tonight, I knew I wanted to make this chicken recipe for Tunie B., it had her name all over it with the sweet spicy honey and the crispy crunchy chicken coating.
After reading the original recipe, I realized that I wanted to try to cut out the double frying it called for, and bake it in the oven. I also wanted to zest up the honey with a little spicy zing that would make the sweet honey flavor all the more prominent and savory.
I also had a container of baked garlic leftover from last week, that needed to be used today, so I tweaked the original recipe quite a bit.
It was a huge hit and I am thinking of making more for shabbat dinner, it was that delicious I could eat it two nights in a row.
For the brine:
1/2 cup kosher salt
1/2 cup sugar
5 cups water
3 lbs bone in chicken legs ,wings or thighs. (I used a bag of Empire frozen Chicken drummets and wings)
For the crispy coating:
1 1/2 cups corn or potato starch
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper
2 tsp. ginger powder
2 tsp. garlic powder
3/4 cup water + 1 tbsp. extra if needed
3 cups vegetable or canola oil for frying
For the honey garlic sauce:
3/4 cup honey
3 tbsp. spicy honey mustard (I used Bone Suckin Sweet Hot Mustard
1/2 cup already baked or fried garlic in olive oil *****
Preheat oven to 375F
Add the chicken pieces completely submerging them in the brine. Cover and refrigerate them for 30 minutes or up to 1 hour.
In a separate bowl start your crispy coating mixture.
Mix together 1 cup of corn starch, with all the spices and the water. Set aside and refrigerate.
In a large pot or deep frying pan, heat the oil to frying temperature.
Remove chicken from brine and pat dry with paper towel.
Add the 1/2 cup of leftover cornstarch to another small bowl.
Remix the water and spiced cornstarch mixture, add the 1 tbsp. of water now if necessary.
Now it’s time to dredge, dip and fry.
First dredge and coat all the chicken in the plain cornstarch, removing any excess cornstarch by shaking it off.
Place on parchment lined prepared baking tray.
Then one at a time, dip each piece of coated chicken into the spiced watered cornstarch mixture covering completely and allowing the excess to drip off.
Then gently place in the hot oil and fry for about 2-3minutes, making sure to move them around to avoid sticking to the bottom of the pan.
Remove chicken with tongs and place onto a aluminum foil lined baking sheet.
Repeat with the rest of the chicken.
Place the fried chicken lined tray into the oven and bake for about 35 minutes till they have turned a nice crisped golden brown.
Now make the honey garlic sauce. In a small sauce pan on medium heat, pour in the honey, and the mustard. Mix well, until all the mustard dissolves in to the honey and you have a thick liquid honey consistency (about 6 minutes). Add the garlic with its olive oil into the honey mixture and mix well with a wooden spoon, mashing the garlic as much as you can into the honey.
When the chicken is finished cooking, remove from oven and pour the honey mustard sauce over it all. Mix with a wooden spoon making sure to coat all the chicken with some sauce.
With tongs, place chicken into your serving platter, then pour the excess honey sauce from cooking tray over all the chicken.
*****baked or fried garlic: I normally make a batch of this for shabbat. I put 1/2 cup olive oil to about 20 pieces of whole peeled garlic in a sauce pan on my stove top at medium low for about an hour, till they are soft and dark in color. You can also now buy them in most local kosher supermarkets at the deli counter.
For this recipe, if you don’t have on hand already made; throw the garlic into the cooling hot oil after the chicken has fried and fry a small batch.