Okay, let's get one thing straight. I like Hooters. The restaurant (get your mind out of the gutter). You know, with the women in the short orange shorts, and tons of beer. And wings. While I don't frequent the place on a regular basis, I can say that they get my business every now and then. Plus, they have a really good burger - I know, you've all just disowned me. And I realize that this post isn't about Hooters, but I'll get back to that point in just a moment.
The Tilted Kilt over on Dutchman's Ln. (it used to be Ernesto's) can be summed up in just a few words. Tacky. Irish. Version. Of. Hooters. Girls in plaid skirts, school girl shirts tied just below their knockers, exposing their (not-so-attractive) stomachs. Yeah, to half-drunken men - this is paradise. To a 25 year old woman, just looking for a quick and cheap meal... not so appealing.
In fact, the first thing Andy said to me when we walked in - "Including you, there's only 3 chicks in here, not counting the ones that actually work here." Great, I can see this going well. Almost tempted to leave, (the place was PACKED - the Louisville vs. Ohio game was on - which is one pro to this place is that there are TV's EVERYWHERE, so it's a sports fan's paradise) we thought we'd stick it out for the food. And we were hungry and desperate.
First of all, it took forever for someone to even talk to us. I kept telling Andy it was because of my estrogen-empowered self, and if I was of the opposite sex, then we would have been waited on promptly. But 20 minutes after being seated, we finally had our drink order taken from us. I don't know about you, but I need to be spoken to at least 5 minutes after being seated.
Anyway, I decided to order the Buttermilk Fried Chicken Salad and Andy got some behemoth of a burger. I find that ordering a salad with some chicken is always a safe bet. Well, almost always. This is what I was served.
Can anybody find the chicken in there? That was my first response. If I knew I would be getting skimped on the chicken, I wouldn't have ordered it. I don't know, maybe I'm just high maintenance, but when chicken comes before salad in the title, I expect to have a decent amount of it. I knew after looking at this that I would definitely be recreating it. And definitely doing a damn fine job of it.
Moral of the story? Stick to Hooters. There's usually an even man to woman ratio, the food is better, and unfortunately also, the girls are a tad more attractive - if you're into that sort of thing =)
So let's get to this amazing salad... the one that I made.
Adapted from Simply Recipes
2 large chicken breasts, each cut in half
2 cups buttermilk
1/2 onion, sliced
1 teaspoon dried parsley
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried tarragon
1/2 teaspoon paprika
2 teaspoons cayenne pepper, divided
2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
salt and pepper
2 cups vegetable oil
2-3 cups chopped romaine lettuce
1 navel orange, peeled and sliced
1 tomato, seeded and chopped
ranch dressing, optional
In a medium bowl, combine the buttermilk, onion, parsley, thyme, tarragon, paprika, and 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper. Mix together and submerge chicken breasts. Cover and let sit in fridge for about 8 hours (I put mine together in the morning before work and it was perfect timing).
Remove chicken from buttermilk and set aside on a plate.
In a shallow dish, combine flour, garlic powder, onion powder, remaining 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper. Mix well.
Dredge chicken in flour mixture and coat well. Set aside.
In a large cast iron skillet, heat the vegetable oil under medium high heat. You'll know it's hot enough when a bit of flour sizzles quickly when added.
Add 2 chicken breast halves at a time and fry for about 7-9 minutes per side, or until cooked through. Place cooked chicken on paper towel-lined plate and cover with foil. Repeat with remaining 2 chicken breast halves.
To assemble the salad, combine the romaine lettuce, tomato, and navel orange. Toss well. Slice up chicken and place atop lettuce. Drizzle ranch (I know, I should have made my own, but honestly, I have this ridiculously large tub of ranch in my fridge - a Sam's Club purchase, of course - that is in need of being used) over salad and enjoy!
So what do you guys think? Which salad would you rather have?
Now this is what I call a proper Buttermilk Chicken Salad. This is a proper amount of chicken. And the plate was just so colorful and vibrant, I couldn't help but smile the entire time I was eating it. Enjoy your Wednesday guys! And if you haven't checked it out yet, I've got the first giveaway on the blog here.