Hot Chicken & Jalapeño Bacon Cheddar Waffle


Author Notes: A twist on the classic Nashville hot chicken: a crispy fried boneless chicken breast, served on top of a spicy jalapeño, bacon, and sharp cheddar waffle with a fiery maple syrup sauce.Karrie / Tasty Ever After

Serves: 4
Prep time: 4 hrs
Cook time: 40 min

Ingredients

  • <em>Hot chicken</em>
  • 4 boneless chicken breasts, pounded to an even thickness
  • 1/2 cup pickle juice
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper hot sauce
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Vegetable or peanut oil for frying the chicken
  • <em>Maple hot sauce</em>
  • 1 cup Grade A maple syrup
  • 4 tablespoons cayenne pepper hot sauce
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper powder
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • <em>Waffles</em>
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1 cup milk
  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 cup sharp cheese, shredded
  • 1/4 cup bacon, cooked and crumbled (4 slices)
  • 3 tablespoons fresh or pickled jalapeño, minced
  • Sliced pickles (for garnish, optional)
In This Recipe

Directions

  1. For the chicken: Marinate the chicken breasts in the pickle juice in the refrigerator in a covered container for 4 hours. After marinating the chicken, remove container from refrigerator and allow to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes.
  2. Set up a breading station with two shallow dishes. In one dish, combine the beaten egg, whole milk, and hot sauce. In the other dish, combine the flour and salt. Remove the chicken from the pickle juice and dip into the egg-milk mixture first, then dip into the flour-salt mixture. Pour 2 to 3 inches of oil into a large cast iron pot or pan and heat the oil to 350° F over medium-high heat. Fry each chicken breast for about 8 minutes on each side, or until internal temperature registers 165° F. Drain on a wire rack over a sheet pan.
  3. For the maple hot sauce: In a small pan over medium heat, combine the maple syrup with the cayenne pepper hot sauce, cayenne powder, chili powder, garlic powder, and paprika. Reduce to low and keep warm.
  4. For the waffles: Preheat a waffle iron to the desired waffle setting. I used a soft waffle setting at 4.5. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt in a large bowl. In a small bowl, mix together the egg, milk, and melted butter until well combined. Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and mix together just until the batter comes together. Fold the cheese, cooked bacon, and jalapeños into the batter. Lightly grease the waffle iron, if needed, and cook per the iron's directions. Mine took about 3 to 4 minutes. Extra waffles can be refrigerated for 1 to 2 days and frozen for up to 1 to 2 months.
  5. To assemble the dish, place one waffle on a plate, one fried chicken breast on top of the waffle, and pour 1/4 cup of the maple hot sauce over it all. Top with the sliced pickles, if desired. Grab a big fork and knife and dig in!

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