Yesterday evening I was facing the usual weekend dilemma – what to make for dinner. I plan our meals for two weeks at a time, but we’re right at the end of the two weeks and we were also busy most of the weekend, so I didn’t have time to do any grocery shopping. I kind of wanted french fries, but we didn’t have any in the freezer. We did have potatoes…so even though I’ve never made my own french fries before, it didn’t seem like it could be that bad (and it wasn’t – in fact, I don’t see any reason why I’d buy them again!). The chicken strips just seemed to go along with the fries perfectly – I’ve never made those before either, but I figured as long as I have a saucepan full of hot oil, I might as well go for it, so I did. The results were delicious! Here’s what you’ll need:
- 1 Tbsp lemon juice
- A little under 1 cup of milk
- 2 chicken breasts, cut into strips
- 1 and 1/4 cup flour
- Seasonings (I used crushed red pepper, paprika, lots of freshly ground black pepper, and a little bit of tarragon)
- 3 potatoes, peeled
- Vegetable oil
First, sour the milk for soaking the chicken. You can also use buttermilk, but I didn’t have any. What I did have was a lemon from the lemonade pie I made the other day, which worked out nicely. Squeeze 1 Tbsp worth of lemon juice from the lemon.
Then, pour it into a measuring cup. Fill up to the 1 cup line with milk. Let it stand for about 10 minutes.
Now, add the strips of chicken into the sour milk to soak.
While the chicken strips are soaking, peel the potatoes.
Cut them into very thin strips. At this point, pour the vegetable oil into the pan so that there’s 1-2″ of oil covering the bottom. You’re going to want to heat it to 300 degrees, which you can check with a handy dandy oil/candy thermometer like the one I just bought.
In the meantime, pour the flour into a medium bowl.
Add in the spices – anything you desire! I used crushed red pepper, paprika, lots of freshly ground black pepper, and a little bit of tarragon.
Mix it all together, and then add in a little of the sour milk from the soaking chicken to get it a little crumbly. Start mixing in all the chicken, adding more flour and more sour milk as needed to get a crumbly consistency.
When the oil has reached 300 degrees, (carefully) place the fries into the oil. Let them fry for about 5 minutes, turning occasionally to make sure they don’t get too brown. Remove them to a paper towel to dry.
Now, let the oil heat up to 350 degrees, and then place the fries in the oil again, but for only about 2 or 3 minutes this time. Once they are golden brown, remove to a paper towel and salt immediately – not too much, but not too little, either.
Now, heat the oil to 300 degrees again for the chicken. Use tongs to add in each piece of chicken. Fry for a few minutes each, flipping sides as needed. Remove from the oil when the pieces are golden brown and crispy.