Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Tornadoes and Fried Chicken

Both associated with Southern things. Even though we don't live in the South, not even in South Bakersfield.

We had that wild weather Monday evening, the thunderstorms and actual rain, and last night on the news we find out that we even had a tornado! A short lived small tornado, and after doing a little internet research, it wasn't even a real tornado, but what they call a 'gustnado', but still, a wimpy tornado in Bakersfield is rare indeed, the last one being in 1999.

This is the definition of a gustnado:
A slang term for a short-lived, ground-based, shallow, vortex that develops on a gust front associated with either thunderstorms or showers. They may only extend to 30 to 300 feet above the ground with no apparent connection to the convective cloud above. They may be accompanied by rain, but usually are 'wispy', or only visible as a debris cloud or dust whirl at or near the ground. Wind speeds can reach 60 to 80 mph, resulting in significant damage, similar to that of a F0 or F1 tornado. However, gustnadoes are not considered to be a tornado, and some cases, it may be difficult to distinguish a gustnado from a tornado. Gustnadoes are not associated with storm-scale rotation (i.e. mesocyclones) that is involved with true tornadoes; they are more likely to be associated visually with a shelf cloud that is found on the forward side of a thunderstorm.

And here is a picture of it, not that I saw it with my own eyes, but still exciting and something to talk about.

And, now, the fried chicken. I think we all know that I'm somewhat challenged when it comes to cooking dinner, a chore that I would just as soon hire someone to do if I could afford it. Either that or just eat out every night. I try, I really do try to come up with a variety of meals, affordable meals, nutritious meals, something to eat each night. I keep trying crock pot recipes with not a whole lot of luck, it seems like any meat I put in the crock pot comes out extremely dry no matter how much liquid I put in there. I tried a recipe where you put chicken parts, vegetables, and a can of beer in there and the chicken was so dry it was absolutely inedible. Seriously.

Anyway, I was trying to come up with a dinner last night and chicken fried chicken sounded extremely unhealthy but delicious, so I found a recipe online and it actually came out good. I got a packet of country gravy mix, but something about it was a little off, so next time I'll just make my own cream gravy even though I'm not much of a gravy maker either.

Here is  the recipe, I pounded down the chicken breasts so that they were all the same thickness to cook more evenly and also cut the recipe in half since we didn't need 6 chicken breasts for just the two of us. I fried it in a pan, about 8-10 minutes per side, but if you have a deep fryer, that's probably even better.

Chicken Fried Chicken

30 saltine crackers
2 tbsp all purpose flour
2 tbsp dry potato flakes (instant potatoes)
1 tsp seasoned salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 egg
6 skinless boneless chicken breasts
2 cups oil for frying

1/ Place crackers in a large resealable plastic bag, seal bag and crush crackers with a rolling pin until they are coarse crumbs. I don't have a rolling pin so I just smashed them with my meat tenderizing mallet. Add the flour, potato flakes, seasoned salt, and pepper and mix well.
2/ Beat egg in a shallow dish or bowl. One by one dredge the chicken breasts in the egg, then place in the bag with the crumb mixture. Seal bag and shake to coat. Or just get frustrated like me and put the crumbs in another bowl and dredge the chicken in it that way.
3/ Heat oil in a deep fryer or large saucepan or just a frying pan like me to 350 degrees or just seems like it's hot enough like me.
4/ Fry chicken, turning frequently, until golden brown and juices run clear, 15-20 minutes.



The coating on this chicken actually stays on the chicken while it's frying, unlike some coatings I've tried that fall off when you try to turn the chicken over. I was happy with it and Keith liked it, so a small victory there in the I Hate To Cook wars.

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