Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Chicken Fingers - Revisited

Every now and then, I go back and reread some of the recipes I posted. I made chicken fingers again this past weekend and realized that somewhere along the line, I've started to lean towards deep frying the chicken fingers rather than pan frying. I'm still pan frying but I'm adding more oil that barely covers the fingers, almost deep frying. I found that this cooks the chicken wings quicker and more evenly.

I also discovered something interesting due to a brain fart and lack of timing. The chicken fingers were done before the fries were done, by 12 minutes! I was in a dilemma because I did not want soggy chicken fingers and since the fries were being baked, I couldn't tent foil the fingers in the oven. So I resorted to "refrying" (egad!) the fingers once the fries were done at the risk of them being too oily.

The oil temperature kept well in the Staub Dutch oven so it didn't take long to get the oil temperature back up to 350 degrees. But something in the back of my head (where all the useless information resides) told me to heat the oil a little higher for the second fry. Some Korean chicken wings place do this to get an extra crisp on the wings. So I let the temperature rise to around 365 degrees before test frying my first strip (better a soggy finger than a burnt finger, I guess). It only took about 30 seconds in the oil until the outside crisped up. So I proceeded to refry the rest of the chicken fingers. All in all, took only a few minutes to refry the whole batch.

To my surprise, the chicken fingers were not any oilier than the first fry and the crust stayed crunchy much longer. My guess is that the fingers had cooled down before going in the second time and were not in the oil long enough to soak up excess oil. Although I wouldn't go out of my way to do a second frying but it's nice to know that they can withstand a second "crisping."

Have a good hump day. Now go and eat well.

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