Posted in Meal of the Week, World of Warcraft

Boralus Brined Chicken Sandwich

So one thing I’ve noticed in all my travels is that frying bird flesh is pretty universal, but there are so many different ways to actually do it. In Boralus, there’s an open air tavern that sells fried bird on a bun. It doesn’t sound exciting, but the second I bit into this, I knew it was something special. I couldn’t figure out what it was. The meat? The seasoning? A different kind of bird?

After the requisite two hours of buttering up, I asked the cook what made it so special. I asked if maybe it was seagull meat? He laughed and told me that there’s only one way to cook seagull:

  • Catch and pluck a seagull
  • Boil it for six hours in seawater
  • Dump the seawater and boil again in fresh water and milk
  • Dump the water/milk mix and boil again in salted ale
  • Throw the entire pot out, bird and all because you’ll never get that wretched stink back out again

Point taken. But, in exchange for being the butt of the joke, he did eventually part with the recipe.

If this looks like a lot of ingredients, it kinda is. Most of that is spices though. We’re going to break this into four teams: Team Brine, Team Dry Rub, Team Dredge and Team Future Crunch. Because ‘dry rub’ and ‘dry mix’ could get confusing.

In Team Brine we have the chicken itself, I used two large chicken breasts and it made four burgers. You also need 5 cups (40oz/1.25L of hot water), 1 cup (8 oz/250ml) of pickle juice, 1/2 cup (100g) of salt, 1/3 cup (~67g) of sugar, 2 tsp of Makes Stuff Good (or Accent, found in the salt aisle) and 1/4 cup (60ml) of oil.

In Team Dry Rub we have most of the seasonings: 2 tsp paprika, 1 tsp black pepper, 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper and 1 tsp of MSG (don’t let this scare you, we’ll talk about it in a minute).

In Team Dredge is a cup of milk (250 ml) and 2 eggs. Easy peasy.

Finally, in Team Future Crunch we have 1 cup (142g) of flour, 2 Tbsp powdered milk, 1 tsp baking powder, 1/2 tsp salt, 2 tsp paprika, 1 tsp black pepper, 1/2 tsp cayenne, 1 tsp MSG.

Phew!! That feels like a lot but it’s a lot of duplicates. You also need a bun and oil for frying.

Start with the chicken. My tip is to let it be partially frozen so that it’s easier to cut. As you can see, this one was EXTRA THICC so that made this easy. You want them no thicker than a centimeter if at all possible to ensure even cooking.

Get out a deep dish and add Team Brine to it. You want the water to be hot so that it can dissolve the salt and the sugar.

Then add our friends the chicken to it. Cover and refrigerate for no more than 3 hours. It can start to break down the chicken too much if you go longer than 3 hours. I take mine out around 2.5. Then we’re ready for step 2.

Once they’re soaked, take them out of the brine, pat off the excess and sprinkle combine Team Dry. Sprinkle the dry rub onto both sides of the chicken. At this point, get your oil heating to about 375F/190C.

Mix Team Dredge, then mix Team Future Crunch together. You want to take the dry rubbed chicken, put it in Future Crunch first, THEN into Dredge, then Future Crunch again. So that’s twice in Crunch, once in the wet milk/egg mix. Once it’s done, carefully put it in your oil to fry.

Let’s take a second to talk about MSG. So, if you are like me, you grew up thinking that MSG was evil and would make your heart race and all kinds of bad stuff. And while there ARE people with MSG sensitivities, they’re about as common as gluten sensitivities. My good friend gets a headache from it, so I don’t add it with anything I’m cooking for them. That being said, it’s just basically concentrated umami, and you will run into it in a lot of places you don’t expect. Cheese and mushrooms are both a natural source of MSG, and there’s MSG in lots of fast food, chips and even ranch dressing. So don’t be afraid of it. Try a little experimenting, it’s not even expensive and can be found as a ‘flavor enhancer’ in the same area as salt in your grocer.

We’re almost done! You ‘re aiming for a nice golden color on the outside and an internal temperature of 165F/74C on the inside. Once that’s done, take it out to drain and them assemble your sandwich. I like some mayo, pickles and lettuce, but it would be great with anything.

So damn delicious.

Ingredients:

Team Brine:

  • Half chicken breasts across the width
  • 5 Cups Hot Water
  • 1 Cup Pickle Juice
  • 1/2 Cup Salt,
  • 1/3 Cup Sugar
  • 2 tsp accent flavor (MSG)
  • 1/4 Cup Olive Oil

Team Dry Rub:

  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp accent flavor (MSG)

Team Dredge (Wet)

  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 large eggs

Team Future Crunch (Dry mix)

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tbsp powdered non-fat milk
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp accent flavor (MSG)

Instructions:

  1. Cut two chicken breasts along the width to make four thinner breasts
  2. Combine all brine ingredients in a casserole dish and soak the chicken for no more than 3 hours
  3. Mix the other teams into separate bowls.
  4. Remove the chicken from the brine, pat dry and sprinkle with the dry rub
  5. Coat in the dry mix, then the wet mix, then the dry mix again
  6. Fry at 375F/190C until the chicken reads 165F/74C. (TIP: Make sure your oil temperature doesn’t drop when you add the chicken breasts, this can make it harder to cook without burning the breading)
  7. Drain, then assemble the sandwich as desired. Cheese, mayo, pickle and lettuce are recommended but have fun with it!

Author:

Just you're basic -cough-'dorei tryin' to make it in Azeroth.

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