Text from my son Tim last night:
Tim: mom wts 4 supper?
Me: Nepalese - eggplant thingie
Tim: WTF?? Y cnt u mk sumfin gd!
Me: such as?
Tim: chkin ngts
So there you have it. I am not making this up. Seriously, my kids could request almost any dish from any country and I would try to make it. But nooooooo, Tim wanted chicken nuggets. Not only that, he didn't want the ready-made frozen "chicken" from our freezer. No, he wanted me to make them.
But, before I get into the recipe, a shout out to my friends Lucy and Richard for their academic input (via a lively Facebook discussion) as to the actual origin of chicken nuggets. They tell me that chicken nuggets were first discovered in the little country of Whathefucovia. Unique to this country, chicken nugget plants are grown and their nuggets exported by the Chicken Nugget Exporting Council (CNEC) which is administered by the U.N. Food Security Council. So, now you know where that bag of chicken nuggets in your freezer comes from. By the way, a quick ingredient count on the bag (whose brand shall remain nameless for fear of nugget lawyers slapping me with a defamation lawsuit) yielded 36 ingredients, many of which I cannot pronounce.
Now for the actual production of homemade chicken nuggets. There were several recipes online, but none of them had all the ingredients I taste when I swipe one off my kid's plate, hot 'n fresh from the microwave. The best one I found is from the awesome blog Soupbelly, from which mine is adapted. And, yes, they are fried, but, you know, WTF, sometimes you just HAVE to have something fried and these are just the ticket.
Homemade Chicken Nuggets (aka, Tim's WTF Chicken Nuggets - Adapted from Soupbelly)
2 lbs. chicken (1 lb. white meat and 1 lb. dark meat)
1 tsp. salt
1 Tbsp. fresh chopped parley
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. paprika
1/4 tsp. pepper
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup flour, seasoned with 1 tsp. salt
2 cups canola oil for frying
Heat oil in a heavy skillet on medium high heat as you're preparing the chicken nuggets. The oil should be very hot, but not smoking.
Cube chicken and place in the food processor along with all the spices. Run the processor until the meat and spices are completely blended and a paste is formed.
Combine 1 tsp. salt and flour on plate. Next, beat eggs in another bowl.
Scoop about a tablespoon full of chicken paste up and form it into a ball about the size of a ping pong ball. Next, roll in the flour, then dip into the egg then in the flour again, shaking off any excess flour.
Press the ball down to form a nugget shape. Set aside and continue until all are done. You should have about 35-40 when you're done.
Place nuggets in oil, taking care not to overcrowd the pan. Fry until the bottoms are golden, then flip to continue cooking until the nuggets are golden brown. This will take about 4-5 minutes per side.
Drain on a cookie sheet lined with paper towels.
Final Assessment: Oh, wow. Tasty, crispy, full of flavor and fried deliciousness. Dip 'em in catsup Once you make these, you'll never go back.