Mini Chicken and Waffles
Pop quiz: Which appetizer will have your guests buzzing for days: (A) veggie platter, (B) canapés or (C) bite-sized chicken and waffles? The answer is definitely C. We pair crispy, well-seasoned pieces of fried chicken with our recipe for slightly sweet homemade waffles. These heavenly minis will undoubtedly be a hit at any barbecue, cocktail party, brunch or movie night. So whenever you decide to serve them, just be prepared to share the recipe (or not).
1 recipe PureWow Waffles (without the cinnamon-sugar coating)
Canola or peanut oil, for frying
1¼ cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon dried Italian herb seasoning
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup buttermilk
1½ pounds chicken tenders, cut into bite-size (about 1-inch) pieces
Hot sauce, to taste
1. In a deep, medium-size pot, heat about 3 inches of oil over medium heat until it reads 350°F on a thermometer.
2. Make the Waffles: While the oil heats, make the waffles. Let the waffles cool slightly, then cut them into bite-size (about 1-inch) squares and place them in a 250°F oven to keep warm.
3. Make the Fried Chicken: In a medium bowl, whisk the flour with the cornstarch, cayenne pepper, Italian herb seasoning, salt and black pepper to combine. Pour the buttermilk into a shallow, medium-size bowl.
4. Toss the chicken pieces in the flour mixture to coat. Working in batches, dip the floured chicken into the buttermilk, then return it to the flour and toss to coat.
5. Working in batches, add the breaded chicken to the hot frying oil. Don’t overfill the pot with chicken, as it will bring down the temperature of the oil. Fry until the chicken is golden brown and floats on the surface of the oil, 3 to 4 minutes. Adjust the heat as needed if the chicken is browning too quickly.
6. Remove the chicken from the oil and drain on several layers of absorbent paper towels. Let cool slightly, then place a piece of chicken on top of a waffle square and secure with a toothpick. Serve immediately with hot sauce on the side.