Friday, July 10, 2009

Chicken and the Corn!

Some of you know, and some of you don't, that my husband owns a chunk of farm ground, and we have a farmer that cash rents it every year. He's nice enough that when he plants his own corn, he does us a favor and plants two rows of sweet corn, just for us. Well, its CORN time! The property happens to butt up to my sister in law's house and she's been checking it for us every couple of days, and it is officially ready. I know it sounds corny (pun completely intended), but we look forward to this every year.

I know, some of you are saying, "come on, its just CORN". And you're right, I used to say the same thing. But there is just nothing better than fresh from the stalk sweet corn, pulled from the field, shucked, and dropped straight into a pot of boiling water. A little butter, and we could make an entire meal out of nothing but corn. The season is so short, we may have this for a week, and then it will be over. We used to put the corn up, but that tradition died several years ago.

So, the husband stopped by and picked a couple dozen ears last night and I defrosted some chicken breast to make chicken strips to go with it. In case you haven't noticed, I'm the kind of person who likes to cook with what she has on hand, and to make use of items that might otherwise go to waste. Well, a few weeks ago, I had a full bag of pretzel twists that had been around long enough, they went stale. Instead of wasting them, I poured them into my food processor and turned them into "pretzel crumbs" to use for breading, just like I do when I have partial sleeves of crackers left over from a "chili" night.

This dish turned out well enough that the husband may not want to have chicken strips any other way from now on. He couldn't stop raving about them. The pretzel coating made them just a little crunchy, and the addition of some seasonings made it extra special. Add a few ears of corn and you have one amazing summertime supper!

Pretzel Crusted Chicken Strips
3 chicken breasts, sliced into strips
2-3 cups pretzel crumbs
1 cup flour
1 TB ground mustard
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
3 eggs
1/4 cup milk

On a plastic cutting board, clean and slice your chicken. Blot away any extra moisture on the chicken with paper towels.

Using 2 pie plates (not three, I also like to save on dishes to wash, so follow along!), set up your breading station. In one, put the 1 cup of flour, in the other, crack 3 eggs, and whisk in the milk to make your egg wash.

A few at a time, roll the chicken strips in flour, then return them to the cutting board. Once they all have a light coating of flour, dump the pretzel crumbs in with the remaining flour and mix together. Add in the mustard, paprika, and pepper.One at a time, dunk each strip in the egg wash, then in the pretzels, pressing down on them to hold the crumbs to the chicken.Once all the strips are breaded, begin frying them in batches in 400 degree oil. Fry the strips until golden and serve with your favorite dippers (we used barbecue sauce).
Enjoy! We thought these turned out great. Unfortunately, the hubs liked them so much that he took all the leftovers to work for breakfast AND lunch today. none for me....


ARLENE said...

So how was the corn? The stuff from Florida has been awful and with all the rain we've had, don't know how the Jersey or NY corn will be. Chicken strips look mighty tasty.

MonkeyGirl said...

I love sweet corn and hope my brother brings us some IA sweet corn next week! And, even though I don't cook often, I totally get the pretzel thing. I was all ready to make oven friend chicken one night and realized too late that I was out of bread crumbs - I subbed the pretzels and they were awesome!!

Kim said...

We love corn at our house too. I can appreciate the excitement of corn week. My kids could eat their weight in corn. Plus, pretzel coated chicken sounds delish. I saw a recipe for potato chip covered chicken. Either one sounds great to me : )

jannza said...

I think I'll try it. Sounds so good. Thank you for sharing your love of sweet corn. I'm with you on that one. : )