Sweet, sweet southern food.
M’m, M’m, good.
(No idea why the Campbell’s slogan just came out of my head – sorry, it’s been a long three days.)
Let’s talk about how I decide on a recipe, because for me it’s a hard task.
See, it all depends on my mood, that and if there happens to be someone I am feeding that day that I am trying to please.
More often than not, I go by my mood because I live in a family of picky, try nothing new, eaters. Except for little Asher, they are also all boys. So basically, beef and chicken are what’s frequently on their radar. They even had a little hissy fit over the pork from Monday.
Most of the time, I just make what I want and forget about the complainers. Well, I don’t forget about them, I will normally make sure they have something to eat. Pizza, chicken, steak or tacos typically do the trick.
But for some reason I was feeling like a simple classic dinner was in need.
That, and I really just wanted to stop my thoughts and decide on a recipe already!
I obviously make a ton of food and I try to make most of my dishes a little different, and hopefully something you haven’t seen too much of. You know just give it a little twist or something, but let me tell you a little secret.
My family? Sometimes they just want the normal stuff. Meaning cheese pizza, pasta with butter + salt (and nothing else), grilled cheese (you know with butter, bread and cheese). Basically nothing fancy, and I can’t blame them, sometimes the simplest foods are the very best.
I know this chicken has a fancy bourbon sauce, but aside from the sauce it’s your just basic, delicious, oven fried chicken. Oven fried because I have been frying too much this week, so I went with oven. It’s the bomb.
Oh and another thing, I really love making foods from different parts of the country, and the world (like my major exploitation of Mexico). It’s super fun to dive into different flavors. The flavors of the South are ones I do not touch on all that often.
I tend to sway towards Thai, Asian and (quite frequently) Mexican, flavors. But this southern food? Yea, it’s safe to say I am so on board with it. I have caught the southern food bug. I actually had another southern meal that I wanted make for today, but it’s heavy on the summer flavors, so I decided to hold off for a few weeks. I kind of can’t stop thinking of summer recipes. I am so ready (as it’s snowing outside my window right now – heck, I’ll even take spring!).
The sauce is honestly the best part. It’s this chicken’s better half. The two just need each other.
Kind of like bread and butter, fries and ketchup and milk and cookies. The honey sweet bourbon sauce with this chicken is one of those, “goes great together” kind of meals. They just work, and to me it screams southern comfort food.
- In a bowl, mix the cornstarch with 1/4 cup of water until smooth. Add the cayenne pepper, salt and black pepper. In a medium sauce pan over low heat, combine the bourbon, 3/4 cup water, soy sauce, honey, BBQ Sauce , Tabasco and dijon. Bring up the heat to a simmer and slowly add the corn starch mixture, whisking vigorously as you go. When the mixture is well combined, cook about 1 more minute. Turn off the heat and set aside until ready to use. The sauce can be made ahead and refrigerated until ready to serve.
- Add the chicken to a large bowl and pour the buttermilk over the chicken. Toss well, cover and refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight.
- After 2 hours or the next day preheat the oven to 475 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with a silpat, foil or parchment paper and spray or brush it with some olive oil.
- Add the corn flakes crumbs, Panko, flour, smoked paprika, chili powder, onion powder, garlic powder, cayenne, salt and pepper. Stir to combine.
- Remove each piece of chicken from the buttermilk, and dredge through the crumbs, pressing gently to adhere. Place on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat until all the chicken has been used. Make sure not to crowd your pan, if necessary use two baking sheets. Lightly spray the chicken with cooking spray or a mist of olive oil. Drizzle the melted butter over the chicken.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes, then reduce the heat to 400 degrees F. Bake for 10-12 minutes more, then flip the chicken over and gently spray with olive oil. Place back in oven for another 15-20 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and the juices run clean. Serve with a lemon wedge if desired and the bourbon sauce.
*Sauce is adapted from my French Fry Bourbon Burgers
Which is good just about any time.
PS. Not my hands. Just another dirty brother (no seriously they had just come in from dirt biking in the snow/mud) dying for some food. Oven-fried chicken was a good lunch. They all approved. AND they loved the sauce!