I’ll admit it. I’m obsessed with Bon Appetit. The magazine, the website, the facebook feed, all of it.
That’s not really a special or important thing to admit, but it allows me to bridge relatively smoothly into my recipe.
You see, a few days ago, I read a post by Rochelle Bilow entitled “These Odd Food Combos are Surprisingly Great.” The short article lists eight culinary pairings that she finds… well, surprisingly great. While some – like kimchi and cheese, or pickles and whiskey – might never have crossed my mind, the greatness of others seemed so glaringly obvious (potato chips in sandwiches and chicken and waffles) that I was surprised Ms. Bilow took the time to list them.
So as not to go off on a tangential rant about the textural and gustational benefits of cramming chips into sandwiches, I’ll skip ahead to my topic, and the latter of the aforementioned glaringly obvious pairings, chicken and waffles.
I assume that some might think it odd to pair something sweet (and usually breakfast-bound) like a waffle, with something savory and dinner-related, like chicken. That thought is, to use a highly technical term, absolute hooey.
There is – in fact – no better pairing than the sweet and the savory, especially something that (once you have tried it) seems so inherently complimentary as chicken and waffles. In it’s traditional incarnation, the crisp, well-seasoned and perfectly moist chicken provides a foundation of savory flavor that is enhanced by the sweet and fluffy waffle.
Plus, maple syrup is delicious with ANYTHING. Just ask Vince Vaughn:
Of course, I couldn’t leave well-enough alone and make a regular chicken and waffles recipe (fried chicken and regular waffles). I had to go and change everything, including the maple syrup.
Note: This recipe was heavily inspired by three things, the chicken and waffles from Lot No. 3, the cornbread waffles from… some place in Ballard (I forget where), and this recipe from the wonderful talent over at foodfaithfitness.com, which I used as a jumping-off point for my own.
Waffle Ingredients: (almost the same as foodfaitfintess.com)
- ½ cup Yellow Cornmeal
- ½ Cup Whole Wheat Flour
- ¼ Cup Cornstarch
- 1 Tbsp Sugar
- ½ tsp Salt
- ¼ tsp Baking Soda
- 1 tsp Baking Powder
- 1 Tbsp Butter, melted
- ¾ Cup lactose free milk
- 1 Egg, lightly beaten
- 1 tsp Apple cider vinegar
- 2 tsp vegetable oil
- 2 cups sweet onions, thinly sliced
- 2 Tbsp Butter
- 2 large apples, thinly sliced(about 2 cups)
- ¼ Cup real maple syrup
- 1 ½ tsp bookers bourbon
- ½ tsp Cinnamon
- 3 slices cooked bacon, chopped
To prepare the chicken, make a good portion of my chipotle yogurt-marinated chicken recipe, and shred it with two forks.
To prepare the waffles, combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl, melt the butter, and slowly incorporate the wet ingredients into the dry mixture.
Stir until the batter is evenly moist, with a few errant lumps.
Allow the batter to rest while you prepare the apple-onion topping.
Melt two tablespoons of butter in a medium skillet over medium heat, and stir in the onions. Make sure that the onions are coated evenly, and allow them to caramelize for at least 25 minutes, stirring occasionally so they don’t stick to the pan.
After the onions are sufficiently caramelized (I let mine go for just over half an hour), stir in the thinly-sliced apple, maple syrup, bourbon, cinnamon and bacon, and stir to combine.
Cook for another 5 minutes, and reduce the heat until ready to serve.
Prepare the waffles in a waffle maker.
You’ll need to experiment with your own waffle-maker. Mine has a single setting (the green light comes on when they’re done), and the waffles were sufficiently cooked after a single run-through.
Serve a waffle with a generous portion of pulled chicken and a heaping scoop of chutney.