I swear I’m a 13 year old girl trapped in a much older body.
I LOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE chicken tenders/fingers/strips. Now let me clarify. I love good ones; not that processed crap you get at a drive thru (sorry but I don’t do beak!) nor will eat mass frozen ones. I want fresh, home style. I want well… mine! 🙂
I also love stuff coated in Panko. But after a while, you want something different.
Well tonight was one of those nights. See it was ungodly cold here so I wanted something warm and comforting. Mr. Fantabulous was getting his nightly fix of pasta so I was opting for Turkey Chili. However my thoughts of chili quickly got halted due to my spying chicken tenders that I HAD to use up. Lord knows I hate wasting stuff so back in the freezer the chili went and out came the chicken. On auto-pilot I reached for the panko when I realized I didn’t what ‘that’. I looked around my pantry and spied the bucket of oats. Yes… I have buckets of stuff. So I took them out and rolled a few around in between my fingers. I wasn’t quite sure if they would turn out, if they would burn, if they would even taste good but I threw caution to the wind and went for it.
I figured to go all the way with this oats thing and first put some in the food processor to make a powder out of it. To ensure that it had a good coating, I did throw in a smidge of flour. Made up the egg/milk mixture. I dumped oats into a pie tin and just stared at it. I had no clue what to put in it. I mean oats are sweet but I didn’t want sweet chicken. Since I was already walking the line here, I added in some wing seasoning (even poultry seasoning would work) and added just a smidge of Parmesan cheese.
I stood there watching this so closely as the oats browned up fast, almost too fast. Fortunately I was able to lower the heat to medium instead of medium/high and this made all the difference. These things were GORGEOUS! I mean, I was drooling!
So Mr. Fantabulous and I sit down for dinner. Him with his mound of pasta and me with one of these tenders. Let me just say that he actually stopped, put down his fork of pasta and said “Hey! Where’s mine? That looks awesome!” I could have done the “Oh I didn’t make you any since you were eating pasta” but I didn’t.. I can’t be that heartless. I brought the plate of them over and I swear he Hoover-ized the rest of his pasta and dug in to these before I could say “I love you”.
I honestly don’t know if I’d use panko any time soon because of these! I can’t wait to try this on pork chops and also fish – maybe tilapia or cod?
Next time I make these I will make an apricot mustard dipping sauce or honey mustard… or both!
- 1 pound boneless/skinless chicken tenders
- 1 1/2 cups quick cooking oats
- 1/2 cup oats ground into a powder
- 2 Tbl flour or cornstarch (optional)
- 1 egg beaten with 2 Tbl milk
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- 1/2 tsp Pepper
- 2 Tbl Parmesan Cheese
- 1 tsp. Wing Dust/seasoning *any poultry seasoning will work
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Mix the instant oats with the wing dust and Parmesan cheese in a pie plate. Set aside
- In another pie plate, mix the ground oats, flour, salt and pepper. Set aside
- In a third pie plate, beat the egg and milk. Set aside.
- In a 12” skillet, add enough oil to cover the bottom. Heat set to medium.
- Create an assembly line having the chicken furthest from the pan, then the oat/flour, next the egg and last the oats/cheese/wing dust.
- Dredge each tender in the oat/flour mixture; shaking off any excess.
- Dip each piece into the egg, coating completely.
- Last, lay each one down in the oat/cheese/wing dust mixture and coat evenly.
- Using tongs as to not get burned, place each crusted tender in the oil.
- Cook approximately 5-7 minutes each side (flipping only once). Your actual cooking time will vary due to the chicken thickness. To be accurate, use a meat thermometer. You want to shoot for 165F.
- Do not let the oil get super hot else you will burn the crust and the chicken will be raw. A nice medium heat is good.
To bake: Preheat oven to 400F and place a cooling rack on top of a pan.
Spray the rack with cooking spray.
Lay the coated chicken pieces on the rack and mist with olive oil.
Bake for 10 minutes and flip gently.
Mist with oil again and bake for another 10 minutes.