Tuesday Oct 15

Tello1 Lin-z Tello is a sophomore at Bowling Green State University, majoring in Environmental Science.  This is her first published food article.
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Chick-Fil-A Chicken in Your Kitchen! By Lin-z Tello

Chick-Fil-A should hire me to be their spokeswoman, I love Chick-Fil-A chicken so much it is borderline pathetic.  I’m certain that I could easily convince anyone to buy a Chick-Fil-A chicken sandwich, since it is one of the tastiest foods I have ever come across from a Fast Food joint, and yet so simple!  Just put some juicy, golden-brown, mouth-watering chicken coupled with a few tart pickle slices on a bun and BAM!  You have a sandwich straight from heaven.

Heaven is not so easy for me to attain, however.  The only Chick-Fil-A in my area is located inside a mall, which is about 45 minutes away from where I currently live.  I have been known to drive that long distance to get my paws on a chicken sandwich when the cravings tear me apart.  However, I recently decided that enough is enough!  If I can not break myself from this addiction, I have to make the chicken come to me… or I have to make the chicken myself!  And since option #1 looks like a no-go, it appears that I will be spending some time in the kitchen.

Tello2 Since I will be cooking up my own version of the Chick-Fil-A chicken sandwich it seems logical to try and tweak the recipe a bit in order to make this sandwich a healthier version of the delectable original.  According to the article “Calories in Chick-fil-A - Chicken Sandwich” from About.com, my beloved chicken Sandwich has earned a D+ due to its high amount of sodium – it has 54% of the suggested sodium you should consume in one day based on a 2,000 calorie diet, and it has over 400 calories (Calories).  I sleuthed around the internet to find the recipe for Chick-Fil-A chicken sandwiches, and I found a few contenders.  I ultimately sided with the following recipe (with a few changes) from ArticlesBase.com, submitted by Brian Burhoe.

Ingredients
3 cups peanut oil
1 egg
1 cup milk
1 cup flour
2 1/2 Tb. powdered sugar
1/2 ts. pepper
2 teas. salt
2 skinless, boneless chicken breasts, halved
4 plain hamburger buns
2 Tb. melted butter
8 dill pickle slices



Directions

1.      Heat the peanut oil in a pressure cooker over medium heat to about 400 degrees.
2.      In a small bowl, beat the egg and stir in the milk.
3.      In a separate bowl, combine the flour, sugar, pepper, and salt.
4.      Dip each piece of chicken in milk until it is fully moistened.  Roll the moistened chicken in the flour mixture until completely coated.
5.      Drop all four chicken pieces into the hot oil and close the pressure cooker.
6.      When steam starts shooting through the pressure release, set the times for 3 1/2 minutes.

Important: Do NOT close the steam release!

7.      While the chicken is cooking, spread a coating of melted butter on the face of each bun.
8.      When the chicken is done, remove it from the oil and drain or blot on paper towels.  Place two pickles on each bottom bun; add a chicken breast, then the top bun. To make a deluxe chicken sandwich, simply add two tomato slices and a leaf of lettuce.  Mayonnaise or mustard also goes well on this sandwich.
 
Tello4I made a few changes to this recipe when making my chicken sandwiches.  First, I did not use a pressure cooker.  I did not have a thermometer that went above 200 degrees that I could use to heat the oil in the pressure cooker, so I decided to cook my chicken in a deep fryer.  Now, I understand that deep-frying chicken isn’t a healthy thing to do, so in the future I plan on cooking the chicken in a skillet with much less oil.  I heated the oil up to 375 degrees (which was the maximum temperature for our deep fryer) and cooked two pieces of chicken at a time for 4 minutes.  If allergies are a concern, I would suggest using vegetable oil or some other alternative to peanut oil.  I also didn’t butter my sandwich buns because my arteries might have killed me, what with the fried chicken and all.  To top off my sandwich, being the pickle lover that I am, I bought pickle halves and sliced them into fourths, which gave the sandwiches a nice crunch.  These sandwiches earn an A+ in my book!
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References

Burhoe, Brian A. "HOME COOKING: Chick-fil-A's Best Recipes You Can Do
Home." ArticlesBase.com. 30 June 2009. Web. 10 Jan. 2011.
"Calories in Chick-fil-A - Chicken Sandwich." Calorie Counter Database - Free
Online Diet Program. About.com. Web. 7 Jan. 2011.
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