Fried Chicken Livers, Nugget-Bites & Cottage Style Fries

For some time now (a few years) my husband has been pestering me. Poking, prodding, and  whining that he wants to get a deep fryer again. At one point I had an essence of Paula Deen in me and I was deep frying everything, and I mean EVERYTHING. I just had to get rid of the one I had, honestly I just hated the thing. Recently we found this one at our Big Box store and not only was a steal but its really well made. A lot of the parts are dishwasher safe and its easy to use, I especially like that its easy to clean up...I can not stand my house smelling like McStinkies. We've mostly used it for chicken wings and fries, but one day I thought about finally giving my boys the treat of chicken that was actually fried instead of baked. There was a bit of a motive behind that though, with my nose to tail adventure in full force I wanted to try chicken livers.

This meal is impossibly easy to put together and as always its most important to me that I know what my family is eating. I know that everything was fried in peanut oil, the chicken was organic and fair quality, the flour was good quality un-bleached flour, good potatoes and the chicken livers, well I grabbed the one container the store had and hoped for the best. On top of that it was a big meal for 4 that cost barely over $10 and the outcome was even better than I'd expected. My son actually ate a few livers without even complaining. Did I tell him what they were? Not exactly, they just magically appeared on his plate and he ate them. I myself was a bit hesitant at first but after that first bite I said SCRAPPLE! It tastes almost mapley like scrapple! (for anyone who's not in the know- scrapple is the best ever breakfast meat.) Stephen cringed but I was pretty excited, I tried something new and liked it. I learned that bigger pieces are not so great, you want to make them small-ish. The contrast between salty, crunchy and mineral-y works best if theres a good ratio of starch to liver. Along with the chicken livers and thigh nuggets I made fries. My favorite type of fried fry isn't the traditional cut fries, I like to make chips, or  1/4" ripple cut cottage style fries. Nice and brown with sea salt? Its the best, this was a great meal. There was something for everyone. 

I served the livers with a peach & chili sauce, and regular hot sauce
Chicken Nugget- Bites, Cottage Style Fries and Fried Chicken Livers
I fried the chips first, the chicken nuggets second and the livers last. You will start off with a higher heat and reduce the temperature for the chicken. 

Cottage Style Chip-Fries:
I typically love to keep red or golden potatoes. For French fries you want a dryer starchy potato. A lot of places twice fry their potatoes so they are crisp. Instead of blanching at a lower temperature I use the regular frying temp and give the fries a bit of a rest during cooking.

2-3 pounds of russet potatoes, sliced 1/4" thick
Peanut oil for frying 
sea salt

Preheat Oil in a dutch oven or deep fryer to 375 degrees.

Cut potatoes and place them into cold water. I add a bit of white vinegar to my water. They can soak at room temperature or in the fridge until needed. You can even rest them up to 24 hours. 

Pat the potatoes dry. You want to remove all excess moisture. Place into oil and fry for 2-3 minutes. Remove from oil and rest a few minutes. Place back into the oil and fry potatoes until they are browned. (about 10-15 minutes total) If you want your fries less crisp you can lower the oil temperature.

Chicken Nugget-Bites (and chicken Livers)

1 1/2 -2 pounds boneless-skinless chicken thighs
chicken livers

Dry Coating-
 2 cups all purpose flour (you can use self-rising)
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon onion salt
pepper, cayenne

Preheat oil to approximately 340 degrees. You can use a dutch oven with oil or a deep fryer.

Rinse chicken/livers. Cut into bite sized pieces. Place in an airtight container or zip bag. Cover with buttermilk. (approximately 1 cup per pound of meat) Allow to marinate 5 minutes to an hour. Place flour and other dry coating ingredients into a shallow bowl. Remove chicken from buttermilk, allow excess to drip off, toss chicken into flour mixture. Toss to coat evenly. Place approximately half pound at a time into the hot oil. Fry 3-5 minutes or until browned. Use tongs or carefully shake the basket to move the chicken around for even browning. Remove from grease and place on kitchen towels to absorb excess grease. Repeat this process with all of the chicken. (Make additional flour mixture if necessary, I prefer to have a little less than too much. You can always make more, and theres no point in wasting.)

Waring Deep Fryer 
This is the closest thing to what I have. I found it cheaper at a local store but it is very well made. The one I have only has one knob but otherwise this model looks the same. It came with two small baskets, one large and it has a cute little peek-a-boo window. You can peep at your food without getting grease splatter in your face. 

Mandoline Slicer
I found this slicer and have been extremely happy with it. It's sturdy, it slices well and its worth the affordable price-tag. 

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