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Thursday, August 14, 2008

Recipe: Garlic Oven Fried Chicken

This is a take off of a recipe I found back in the 80's after my mother suffered a stroke and I took over the cooking duties of the house. Mom and I loved Fried Chicken ... but dunking it in a pot of grease or even using a fry pan would have been too much cholesterol ... but a bit of research, trial & error, and retooling for my family has produced this great recipe.
**********************
serves 6 people (well 4 bigs and 2 kids)

9 boneless skinless chicken breasts
2 cups mashed potato flakes (the potato pearls will not work here)
1 tsp chives, dried & crushed
1 T garlic, dried (I don't recommend fresh in this recipe, it will burn)
OR
1 1/2 tsp garlic powder (I do not recommend garlic salt either)
3 T margarine (or butter)
4 eggs

Two gallon sized freezer bags (I suggest the zip top kind, alternate method at end)
____
Preheat oven to 375*F, and heat up a cast iron pan that is big enough to hold all the chicken at once without over crowding (I heat it dry, no oil no butter)

In a gallon sized freezer bag break in the 4 eggs and mix them well (either with a fork, or do what I do - zip it up and sqeeze them until the whites & yolks are well mixed).

In the other bag add the potato flakes and the spices, zip it up and shake well to mix.

Now using a fork, being careful not to poke bag add one or two breasts into the egg bag ... zip it up and shake to coat the breasts. carefully move these breasts into the bag with the potato mixture, and add two more breasts into the egg bag. zip them both up and shake to coat.

take the breasts from the potato bags and put them onto the hot cast iron pan, swap the egged breasts over to the potato bag and put two new breasts into the eggs. repeat until all chicken breasts are coated and in hot pan.

Now you have your breast coated (both sides hopefully) and two bags with plenty of stuff left...I hate pitching anything out, so add the yolks to the potato mixure and mix well. pour this over the chicken in the pan. cut the margarine/butter into thin pats and place it around the pan so it will melt around the chicken.

Now bake for 20 minutes and then turn the chicken to make sure it browns evenly. Cook an additional 20 minutes (40 minutes total).

Turn off the oven and let it sit for 10 minutes longer in the hot over to be sure chicken & egg mixture is thoroughly cooked.

Serve with your favorite vegetable -- the potato will count as a starch if you are doing exchanges ... but it is so much healthier than those ready made one available in the store, and even more so than a batter which will use salt and flour.

+++++++
Alternatives:

Okay I found that using 16 oz yogurt containers or cool-whip containers with their lids works great for coating too -- just put the lids on and shake. They can take the pokes of a fork and make it easier to mix the eggs and potatoes together.

You can play with the spices to your liking. We have also enjoyed;

Paprika, lemon pepper, old bay seasoning (just watch out for too much salt), 'mediterranean' herb blend, and just good ole S&P.

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