Yup so I disappear for weeks on end and come back with more waffles! What can I tell you. I have about 30 recipes waiting in the wing to share with you, it’s just been a rather busy time! But I will try to sit down at least once a week to get a few out to you!
So let’s start off with some comfort food. It’s been raining a ton in Vancouver so lately I have been making lots of belly warming fare. But because we like to balance things out – I will hit you back with some serious salad-y goodness and well from there we can ping pong back n’ forth between uber healthy to healthier versions of rib sticking goodness.
Chicken and Waffles have of course been done and done and done and done. And I have tried my fair share of them. This version is my favorite. It’s a riff on a Vancouver favorite at YOLKS.
Their chicken & waffles is close to perfection in my book. However, I have to say I like my chicken better (Yolk’s version is more chicken strip than fried chicken per se)! And well, I feel better using spelt in my waffles, and I love the nuttiness and extra nutritional value!
But I love their combo of creamy gravy with powdered sugar and syrup. Some places give you hot sauce and syrup, while others just syrup.
Anyway this is my version. I have no idea what they use to make theirs. But taste-wise this comes pretty close.
- Homemade chicken stock – reduced by half or more (this is important it tastes soooooo much better – but of course if you have to you can use store-bought, but don’t use a cube or powder for this)
- Heavy whipping cream 36% (don’t use half n half, just don’t)
- Fresh cracked pepper
- A few dashes of gravy flour (the kind made for gravy specifically – regular will clump and be too gluey)
Reduce chicken stock until reduced by about half or more. Depending how thick and rich you want your gravy. Dash in some gravy flour, not very much. Whisk while boiling to test thickness you want. Always use less than you thick and add a tiny bit more later. Don’t want it gluey! When you like the consistency, reduce the heat to low simmer, add in some cream and pepper and whisk til beautiful. Keep on lowest setting to keep warm. Can always add a dash of water if it’s too thick by the time your waffles and chicken are ready.
- Good quality skinless chicken breast and/or boneless skinless thighs, cut into strips. For 2 adults, 2 small kids, 2 breasts was enough. But use how much you think you need!
Marinade: (Herb and spice amounts are totally rough, you can adjust to your preference) – Based on marinading 2 chicken breasts.
- Buttermilk (half the carton)
- Poultry herb blend (maybe a 1/2 tbsp)
- Paprika (1 tsp)
- Cayenne Pepper (1/2 tsp)
- Fresh Cracked Pepper
- Dash Himalayan or Sea salt
Put chicken into marinade in a bowl overnight in fridge or for as long as you got. At least 4-6 hours is best. But overnight is better!
To Fry: (Coating amounts rough, can always add more)
- Olive oil (or a mixture or Olive oil and Grapeseed)
- Spelt Flour (start with a cup)
- Panko Crumbs (start with a cup)
Preheat a deep pan with an inch or so of oil. Medium/High. But all stoves are different.
Mix Panko and Spelt in a bowl. Dip marinaded strips (pull each strip out individually and let excess drip off) into bread/flour mixture. Coat the entire strip and set aside. Keep coating strips til all done. I find chop sticks to hold the chicken and a spoon to coat works well.
Fry the chicken in the hot oil. Test the oil by tossing in a pinch of panko. If it sizzles it’s ready. Cook one side of chicken til golden brown. Don’t turn too early or coating with come off on bottom of pan since we are shallow frying rather than deep frying. So be patient! Once golden and easy to move then flip over and fry the other side. Same thing once golden and easy to move it’s done. I tend to cook my chicken til brown rather than golden because I am paranoid about under-cooked poultry. But if you are a regular meat cooker than you will probably have a better idea of when it’s done! But thankfully the buttermilk keeps the chicken tender even if it’s over cooked a bit!
Drain the chicken on paper towel.
Waffles: (I usually just find a solid recipe online and adjust) re: Buttermilk Waffles
My variations are marked (*)
- 2 cups spelt flour *
- 1 tbsp coconut or cane sugar*
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 cups full fat* buttermilk (we go full-fat in this house!)
- 1/3 cup melted unsalted* butter (added to the buttermilk before adding in the eggs)
- 2 large cage free eggs
- 1/2 tbsp vanilla*
Mix wet, mix dry, combine.
Cook in a waffle iron. If yours has a timer great. My current iron doesn’t so I time for about 5 minutes and that works pretty well. No need for cooking spray (YUCK) or butter. The melted butter in the batter helps it to not stick. And while I hate non-stick coatings, most waffle irons have them and well for waffles I make an exception cause otherwise all those little indentations would be a nightmare! Although one day I hope to find a stove top cast iron waffle iron that I can season well til it’s non stick of it’s own accord. Breakfast wishes and waffle dreams!
- Maple Syrup
- Powdered Sugar
And yeah if you want to add some hot sauce too go for it. But with the gravy I personally don’t think you need it!
NOTE: If you have leftover gravy pop it into a Tupperware and freeze it! Then another night you can whip up some roasted garlic buttermilk mash potatoes, steamed green beans and well, more friend chicken and you have your gravy ready to go for a super easy dinner!