May 30, 2011

Make Ahead Monday-Chicken Strips and Potato Wedges

What kid doesn't like chicken nuggets and french fries? (well actually I have met plenty that don't but I would think they are a minority).  I don't seem to have good luck buying frozen chicken nuggets (ever since I watched the first season of Food Revolution I have had a hard time eating most chicken nuggets) but I do have great success and luck with home made ones.  TANGENT-have I ever mentioned that our elementary school serves chicken nuggets for breakfast some times and finds absolutely nothing wrong with that seeing as how they serve pancakes on a stick for lunch sometimes?  I digress.  Why not make your own chicken nuggets and potato wedges to freeze and have on hand for easy lunches (I am all about the easy lunch people). 
Here is my favorite recipe for chicken nuggets or strips.
-chicken breast cut into desired pieces (try and keep the even in size so they cook evenly).  If you are using frozen chicken breasts or if you don't like cutting fully thawed and squishy chicken breasts, cut them when they are partially frozen-it is easier to cut and get the right sized piece and not nearly as squishy.
1 tsp minced garlic
2 tbsp canola or olive oil
sprinkle of salt and pepper.

- 1 cup panko bread crumbs (have you ever used these-oh you must try them)
-1/2 cup flax seed meal (I am not a health nut by any means but these add a bit of crunch and fiber all at the same time)
-1-2 tbsp Parmesan cheese (the powdered kind works fine)
-1 tsp salt
-1/4-1/2 tsp pepper (depending on the spiciness you want)
other seasonings if desired (garlic powder, Cheyenne pepper)
1 egg

 Cut chicken and place in a zip lock bag with all the marinade ingredients.  Refrigerate for 1-3 hours.  Beat the egg with some water in one shallow bowl.  Combine all the topping ingredients in another bowl.  Place chicken pieces in the egg wash, then in the coating mix and onto a greased cookie sheet.  Bake at 350 for about 15-20 minutes depending on the size of your pieces.  If you are going to freeze these then place the cookie sheet (after it has cooled) in the freezer to individually freeze them for about an hour or until firm.  Transfer to bags or containers to store in the freezer.  To reheat microwave or bake in a toaster over until heated throughout.  (I usually microwave for a few seconds first and then bake so they are crunchy).

Potato Wedges
5-6 potatoes (depending on how many wedges you want to make) washed and cut into wedge like pieces (mine never look real wedge like).
2-4 tbsp oil (depending on how many potatoes -use more if you use a lot of potatoes)
seasoning of choice (sometimes I just use salt and pepper, sometimes I use a barbecue seasoning, sometimes seasoned salt)
Place potatoes in a zip lock bag with the oil and seasonings.  Toss to coat.  Transfer wedges onto cookies sheets lined with parchment.  Make sure you don't over crowd the pan.  Bake at 410 degrees for about 20-25 minutes (watch though because if you have thinner pieces they may cook faster or fat ones need longer time).  To freeze these place cookie sheet in the freezer and individually freeze them until firm.  Transfer to baggies or containers to store in freezer.  To reheat microwave for a few seconds and then bake in a toaster oven until heated through out.
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  1. We love homemade nuggets and fries too! I usually add pureed broccoli to the egg wash to add some veggie into it...tastes delicious and my kids gobble them up:)

  2. I love homemade chicken nuggets but NEVER thought of making a bunch and freezing them. You're changing my life, here!


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