It’s more common in our home to find schnitzel on the menu than homemade buffalo chicken tenders – in fact, we rarely cook anything so traditionally American. This has nothing to do with preference of flavour, but as a German-Australian girl, I’ve just never learnt. That being said, to be entirely honest, a few years ago I probably wouldn’t have touched this recipe with a ten foot pole. I had never even seen a bottle of hot sauce, never-mind marinated chicken in it, dipped and breaded with it, then dunked the finished product in it again for good measure.
I had absolutely no appreciation for hot-sauce until lent one year, when I dubiously opened a bottle of Texas Pete that a dear old friend had gifted me 12 months earlier while I was visiting her in the deep south of the USA. Having tossed away the table salt for the season, my bereft taste buds rejoiced in the picante tang, and I became a hot-sauce convert. Despite my new found love of hot sauce, it wasn’t until now that I’d tried buffalo chicken.
Actually, that isn’t entirely true.
My German-American husband, David loves buffalo chicken, and had eagerly purchased some pre-marinated “buffalo chicken skewers” from the grocery store here in Melbourne, Australia. They were good, but apparently they didn’t taste anything like the buffalo chicken tenders back home, and I (having nothing to base the flavour combinations on) was at a loss as to how to create these mythical breaded chicken delights by myself. Sure, recipes are all well and good, but they can’t take the place of “knowing” how a dish is supposed to taste, smell and feel. There’s so much that a simple recipe can’t translate.
Wandering through my local Aldi store (my home away from home, really), I found a bottle of Sweet Baby Ray’s Buffalo Chicken Wing Marinade and vowed that now I had the sauce bottled for me, there could be nothing that would keep me away from preparing these (by this point) almost mythical delicacies
Well, long story short, I made these.
I’d love to give you the recipe but in all honestly, there isn’t much of a recipe to be found. Here is a hack-version of my recipe – please use common sense if you make this! I did not time the cooking process accurately, so have not listed times here. I would strongly suggest cooking these at a slightly lower temperature than your usual breaded meats – for some reason the sauce seemed to cause the breading to brown much more quickly than usual. I served these with a side of extra sauce.
- ½ cup yogurt or light sour cream
- 1 large egg
- 2 cloves of crushed garlic
- 1 tsp of salt
- ⅔ cup of buffalo chicken marinade/sauce
- 500 grams of chicken breast, skin off
- ½ cup of plain flour
- 2 cups of fresh or panko bread crumbs
- Enough vegetable oil to shallow fry your tenders (I use Rice Bran oil)
- Mix yogurt, egg, crushed garlic, and salt together in a large bowl.
- In separates bowl, pour off about ⅔ of a cup of buffalo chicken sauce, and place the crumbs in another.
- Slice the chicken breast into chicken tender sized pieces and place in the bowl with the yogurt and egg mixture. Make sure the chicken is well coated. Leave the chicken to marinade for a few hours, or skip straight to the next step if you're in a rush.
- Remove the chicken piece by piece and coat in the flour. This can be made very simple by putting the flour in a clean plastic bag, adding the yogurty chicken a few pieces at a time, then shaking the flour and chicken together in the bag until it's coated.
- Take the floured chicken pieces one at a time and dunk them in the buffalo chicken sauce, coating completely before placing in the bread crumb bowl. Press crumbs firmly into the sauce coated chicken pieces.
- Shallow fry in a large, open skillet on medium heat until the chicken is cooked through and the crumb is golden brown.