This, I believe, was the second-to-last recipe I created for Family Bites. I wanted to create a healthier chicken and fries combination, and I think this hit the mark.
The chicken is marinated in an egg white-corn starch mix with some seasonings to tenderize the meat and keep it moist, then the strips are rolled in rice krispies and baked until crisp and cooked through. The coating remains crunchy while the chicken inside isn't dry at all.
My favorite way to make crispy baked potato wedges that mimic regular fries is to boil the potatoes briefly before baking. This sort of partially cooks the potatoes and takes away from the baking time. Make sure you pat them dry or else they'll end up steaming instead of roasting.
The next step is to toss them with only enough oil to coat the outsides. This kind of just helps the browning without the excess oil soaking in. To finish, you saute butter with garlic and chili powder and pour it over the finished potatoes.
Using Newman's Own Oil & Vinegar dressing, my mom suggested making a quick sticky sauce to dip the chicken strips and potatoes in. She got this idea from a sticky chicken recipe she makes, but instead of using it as a marinade-sauce, we just boiled the dressing, soy sauce, and sugar together until slightly thickened. Ours came out rather salty, but I think that's because of the soy sauce I used. It really added flavor to the chicken, though.
This was probably the longest recipe I created, but obviously it's more of an entire meal than just the entree. Looking at the other Family Bites recipes, it probably wasn't necessary to do this, though I had the idea and decided to go with it. Serve this with a salad for greenery.
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Baked Chicken Fingers and Sticky Soy Dipping Sauce
recipe by Christina Provo
Baked chicken fingers with a crispy rice cereal coating and roasted potato wedges. Served with sticky dipping sauce featuring Newman's Own Oil & Vinegar dressing.
Prep time: 25 minutes
Cook time: 60 minutes
Yield: 4-5 servings
4 chicken breasts, sliced lengthwise into 4-5 strips
4 egg whites
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
1/4 teaspoon basil
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
3 1/2-4 cups rice crisp cereal
2/3 cup Newman's Own Oil & Vinegar dressing, well shaken
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup sugar
- Preheat oven to 400°. In a medium bowl whisk egg whites until frothy. In separate, small bowl whisk cornstarch with salt, basil, and cayenne pepper. Whisk into egg whites until completely smooth and slightly thickened. Stir in chicken strips, making sure the egg white mixture coats chicken evenly, and marinate for 25 minutes.
- While the chicken is marinating, whisk Newman's Own Oil & Vinegar dressing with soy sauce and sugar in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil on medium-high heat, then reduce heat to maintain a steady boil for 6-7 minutes. Lower heat; cover and keep warm.
- Spray a rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray. Spread rice crisp cereal out in a pie dish and roll chicken strips in cereal, coating evenly. Place on baking sheet. Move sheet with potatoes onto lower oven rack and put sheet with chicken fingers on middle rack. Bake for 10 minutes. Flip chicken fingers over. Continue cooking for another 5 minutes or until the chicken fingers are a light golden brown.
- During last 5 minutes, melt butter in a skillet. Saute garlic with chili powder for 2 minutes, being careful not to let it brown. Drizzle over potatoes on baking sheet with potato wedges and toss to coat. Sprinkle with parsley. Divide chicken fingers and potato wedges. Serve with sticky soy dipping sauce.
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Chili-Garlic Potato Wedges
Recipe by Christina Provo
Yields 4-5 servings
2 pounds russet potatoes, scrubbed
1 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon chili powder
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 tablespoons finely minced fresh parsley
- Preheat oven to 425°. Bring a medium-sized pot of water to a boil with 1 teaspoon salt.
- Slice potatoes in half lengthwise, then each half into quarters or thirds depending on the size. Add half the potato wedges to the boiling water and boil for 1 minute 30 seconds. Remove potatoes with a slotted spoon to a colander; pat dry with a paper towel and place on rimmed baking sheet. Repeat with remaining potatoes. Pour 1 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil over potatoes and sprinkle with 3/4 teaspoon salt; toss to coat evenly. Roast for 30 minutes, turning potatoes over halfway through.
- Decrease oven temperature to 400°. Move sheet with potatoes onto lower oven rack. Bake for an additional 10 minutes, then flip potatoes over. Continue cooking for another 5 minutes.
- During last 5 minutes, melt butter in a skillet. Saute garlic with chili powder for 2 minutes, being careful not to let it brown. Drizzle over potatoes on baking sheet with potato wedges and toss to coat. Sprinkle with parsley.