My mom is kind of a germ freak and when you are raised by a germ freak some of the germ-freakishness will inevitably rub off on you. My older sister Olivia and I were basically raised in a bubble. Being the first of my mom’s kids, she was able to keep us in a very neat and meticulously kept house most of our early childhood. She literally used to wash her hands, before changing our poopy diapers, after (of course), and probably once or twice during. A favorite story of my parents is the time they tried to let Olivia feel grass on her feet for the first time. The result was like a scene on Aeon Flux. She absolutely freaked out, lifted her legs with superhuman flexibility, and screamed bloody murder as if my parents were trying to end her life. I have had my own moments (many of them) but we have all come a long way.
My mom has definitely come the farthest after 7 kids, nieces and nephews, pets, foreign countries….you get the picture. I have come a long way myself. I am proud to say that I have the full farmgirl experience under my belt that is a big part of it. Goat-milking, Pig-chasing, poop-shoveling (yes, I have used the word poop twice, now three times, in one post.) and all.
I have said all this to help you understand that, although I still have some moments, I am not nearly as much of a germ freak as I used to be. However, I still recognize the need to use food safety and I still hate dealing with raw meat. Not just because of the safety issues but also because it is so inconvenient to have raw meat on your hands. There is also the faucet issue. Am I the only one who has trouble figuring out how to get your hands clean without touching the faucet handle? Most of the time you can just use the back of your hand to turn it on but I happen to be dealing with one of the stupidest faucet handles known to man. Not only is it very small, but it is also tight and impossible to turn on without fully touching with your fingers. If you have something nasty on your hands and there is no one around to turn on the water for you then you are forced to get your handles all dirty. Then you have to clean the handles. Very frustrating.
Breaded chicken is not going to win me any awards for originality but sometimes my family, that is full of picky eaters, just really wants basic. The blue cheese helps to add a little flavor but this is still one of the easiest recipes I have ever posted.
We always brine our meat in my house. I don’t always add that to my recipes but a simple salt and vinegar brine for 24 to 48 hours can make all the difference in your meat. For my parents, meat isn’t worth eating if it isn’t tender and for the kids, if it is to dry they get bored with chewing and don’t finish it (not that they always finish tender meat, but it helps).
- 2 pounds (or 900g) chicken tenders or breasts
- 2 tablespoons of salt and 2 tablespoons vinegar (optional)
- 4 eggs
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 2 1/2 cups bread crumbs (I used whole wheat but you can use whatever kind you like)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1 1/4 cup sour cream
- 3/4 cups mayonnaise
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 4 ounces blue cheese, crumbled
- 2 - 4 tablespoons milk
- For the chicken: If you choose to brine stir together 2 tablespoons salt and 2 vinegar with about 2 cups of water. Add chicken to brine and add enough water to cover chicken. Place in fridge and brine for at least 8 hours and up to 2 days. Rinse before breading.
- Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F (200 C). Beat eggs in a wide-mouthed bowl and pour flour onto a tall-sided plate or pie dish. Mix breadcrumbs with seasonings in a separate bowl and line a baking sheet with foil.
- Dip chicken first in flour, then eggs, then breadcrumb mix and turn to coat completely. Repeat for all of the chicken. Place chicken evenly apart on pan and bake for 12 - 15 minutes until golden brown. If you want them really crisp you can broil on the top shelf of your oven for a few minutes. Just don't walk away or they will burn.
- Stir 2 tablespoons of milk and all other ingredients together. Add more milk if you want it thinner. Refridgerate in air-tight container overnight for best flavor.
These can be fried instead of baking. Just heat a few cups of oil over medium heat and fry for 6 - 8 minutes until golden brown.
This is a great weeknight dinner or snack and really doesn’t take that long. It is also a good way to use up those annoying bread heels that no one eats