We were in Edinburgh the other day enjoying some culcha (actually The Jim Henson Muppet Show which I may have enjoyed more than Babybear) and when we went to buy lunch I noticed that the Italian deli place had some breaded chicken pieces ready to put into sandwiches.
I hardly need point out that despite doing this baby led weaning business with a pure heart and therefore knowing that I could just buy something to eat when we got there, I had packed enough provisions to sustain Babybear through a journey to the North Pole.
Nevertheless, I just had a sneaking feeling that besides all her porridge pancakes, bread sticks, peaches, banana and cheese, she might enjoy a spot of fried chicken in breadcrumb. I mean, what's not to like?
So I get home, tell The Husband and his beady wee eyes light up… we're going to get to eat fried chicken? He's liking baby led weaning more and more…
So here is my version, which I made and froze yesterday and ate tonight with great success.
Find some manky old bread and whizz it to make breadcrumbs. We had the ends of an old multigrain, which contains all sorts of seeds and therefore plays fast and loose with potential allergens but it was all I had and I was in the mood for experimentation. Fling in a couple of cloves of garlic and a teaspoon of sweet smoked paprika (fast becoming my flavour enhancer of choice now that salt is off the menu) and whizz some more.
Slice up some chicken breast pieces to a goujon-ish size (or finger/chip-sized if you will) and dip them in the breadcrumbs. I thought that I might need some egg to make it stick but it was fine.
I layered them in a tupperware between greaseproof paper and stuck them in the freezer because I didn't want to eat them immediately and I knew that my chicken pieces were fresh and tonight I heated the oven up to 180 degrees, oiled a baking tray with my trusty oil squisher then put them in for about 25-30 minutes (after another wee squish on top with the oil.)
Serve with loads of lemon juice on top and some peas and sweet potato chips and you are laughing (particularly at the baby, who still doesn't have much of a pincer grip and spent much of the time chasing petits pois round her highchair tray.)
If anything, they were probably a bit overcooked by the time they came out but I was feeling a bit paranoid about that woman sallymonella at the time, so if you are doing this recipe I'd check to see if they are piping hot in the middle by eating one at about 20 minutes in.