Chicken Nuggets

WITH CILANTRO DIP­PING SAUCE

Food & Drink - - ENTERTAINING AFTER MIDNIGHT -

The crispy tex­ture and nos­tal­gia fac­tor of these yummy bites are sure to de­light your guests. These tasty morsels can be made a few hours ahead and re­heated but they’re at their best straight out of the fryer.

DIP­PING SAUCE

1 cup (250 mL) packed fresh cilantro ½ cup (125 mL) packed fresh pars­ley 5 cloves gar­lic

¾ cup (175 mL) veg­etable oil

2 tbsp (30 mL) red-wine vine­gar ¼ tsp (1 mL) salt

CHICKEN

1 cup (250 mL) all-pur­pose flour

1 tsp (5 mL) salt plus more for sea­son­ing 3 eggs

1½ cups (375 mL) dry bread crumbs

½ cup (125 mL) sesame seeds

3 to 4 chicken breasts, 2 lbs (1 kg) in to­tal Veg­etable oil, ap­prox. 8 cups (2 L) for fry­ing or ¼ cup (60 mL) for bak­ing

1 Pre­pare sauce by whirling cilantro and pars­ley in a food pro­ces­sor. With mo­tor run­ning, drop in gar­lic cloves. Slowly pour in oil in a slow steady stream. Whirl in vine­gar. Sea­son with salt. Sauce will keep well, cov­ered and re­frig­er­ated for at least 12 hours.

2 For coat­ing, place flour and salt in a shal­low dish. Beat eggs in a sep­a­rate shal­low dish. In an­other shal­low dish, stir bread crumbs and sesame seeds.

3 Cut chicken into 1½ to 2-inch (4 to 5-cm) chunks. Sea­son with salt, if you like. Work­ing with a few pieces at a time, dip and coat in flour then egg. Next, coat in sesame-bread crumb mix­ture. Set on a parch­ment-lined bak­ing sheet. Re­peat un­til all chicken is coated.

4 To fry, fill a deep fryer or large deep pot with 2 inches (5 cm) of oil. Set over medium-high. Heat un­til a ther­mome­ter reads 350°F (180°C). Work­ing in batches, care­fully add chicken. Cook about 6 pieces at a time. Ad­just heat as needed to main­tain tem­per­a­ture. Fry un­til deep-golden and chicken is cooked through, 5 to 7 min­utes. Re­move to a pa­per-towel-lined bak­ing sheet. Serve im­me­di­ately.

5 To bake, pre­heat oven to 400°F (200°C). Ar­range dipped chicken pieces over 2 parch­ment-lined bak­ing sheets. Brush all sides with oil. Bake un­til chicken is crisp and cooked through, 20 to 22 min­utes.

6 If mak­ing ahead, cool com­pletely. Cover and re­frig­er­ate for up to 8 hours. Re­heat by pre­heat­ing oven to 375°F (190°C). Bake cooked chicken on a bak­ing sheet un­til crisp and warm, about 8 min­utes.

7 Serve hot nuggets with dip­ping sauce. Makes ap­prox­i­mately 36 nuggets and 1 cup (250 mL) sauce

WHAT TO SERVE

Ori­gin Aro­matic Sparkling Wine VQA LCBO 493304, 250 mL, $5.95

Codor­níu Brut Cla­sico Sparkling Cava LCBO 215814, $13.95

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