Happy birthday to me! Happy birthday to me! Happy beeeerrrrrthday, happy birthday to me!
Today is my birthday foodies & foodettes and although I am flattered everyone out there wants to celebrate my birth, some folks might also be celebrating the birthday of the King of Rock and Roll, the one and only Elvis Presley. Yes it's true Elvis and I (and David Bowie) all share the same birthday. And yes, I am no where near as famous or influential as my birthday mate but perhaps I will be one day. Heck, I knew stars were in my future in the first grade when I approached my mom while she was blow drying her hair listening to Elvis on the radio on my seventh birthday and flatly said, "It's a shame Elvis didn't live to meet me." Commence stunning. Mom almost dropped the dryer in the sink over how assured I was that it would enrich Elvis Presley's life if he and I were acquainted. Oh boy was I precocious!
Hard to believe that moment was about twenty years ago. Did I just date myself? Eek! Oh well. As I was commuting home yesterday contemplating the next year of my life and my more-famous birthday counterpart, I was struck by a hunka-hunka burning inspiration to cook a Birthday Meal Fit for The King to celebrate the fact that we both have graced this earth. After a trip to the market and some extensive Internet searching of Elvis' favorite foods plus my southern food favorites, I finalized the honorary menu: Southern Fried Chicken, Savory Collard Greens, Cinnamon Cornbread, and The King & I Peanut Butter Custard.
Of course my research on Elvis' food choices began the design of each dish and then my personal food choices completed each dish. I may be a Yankee, but I am also an indoctrinated southerner giving rise to love of all things fried and real BBQ. Yet, I still cannot get down with grits. I'm sorry, to me grits will always be gruel I don't care how much butter and cheese you put in them. I am not enticed. Therefore there will not only be no grits, but there are also no bananas in a Birthday Meal Fit for The King. Everyone knows and loves the tale of Elvis' guilty pleasure being a fried banana and peanut butter sandwich. I, however, am allergic to bananas and I don't think The King wants to hang out with me just yet in the afterlife.
"Wise man say, only fools don't read recipes," so please continue on!
Southern Fried Chicken Tenderloins
Serving Size: 2
- 6 large white meat chicken tenderloins
- 1 1/2 cups buttermilk pancake mix
- fried chicken batter seasoning*
- 1 cup buttermilk
- vegetable oil for frying
- *everyone's fried chicken seasoning is secret. I will tell you it involves at least salt, black pepper, paprika, and cumin.
- Make sure chicken tenderloins are dry.
- Bring your oil temperature in fryer up to 375 degrees. Preheat oven to 250 degrees.
- Pour buttermilk in one shallow bowl and have your flour +seasoning mixture in another shallow bowl.
- Dredge each tenderloin in the flour mixture, then in the buttermilk, and then again in the flour mixture. Be sure to let some buttermilk run-off before going through the flour a second time.
- Put battered tenderloin directly into fryer.
- Let each tenderloin fry 10-12 minutes or until a golden brown color is reached.
- After frying, let each tenderloin drain on paper towels. If you are still cooking and need to keep these warm while you prepare the rest of the meal, put the tenderloins on a lined baking sheet in the 250 oven until its time to eat.
- Because hot sauce and fried chicken are flavor besties, add your favorite hot sauce for the finishing touch! We love Sriarchi, so hot and yummy!
Serving Size, 9x4 cake pan
- 1 cup flour
- 1 cup cornmeal
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 egg
- 1/3 vegetable oil
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees and generously grease cake pan with butter.
- In a bowl, combine all the dry ingredients well.
- Mix in egg, buttermilk, oil until well combined.
- Pour batter into greased cake pan.
- Bake for 23-25 minutes or until the top is golden brown.
- Let cool for 5 minutes in pan before cutting pieces.
Quick Savory Collard Greens
Serving Size: 2
- 1/2 bunch of collard greens
- 3 large garlic cloves, minced
- 1 cup thinly sliced red onion straws
- 1/2 chicken stock
- olive oil
- 1 tblsp. balsamic vinegar
- salt & pepper
- Over medium heat in a large saucepan, heat olive oil.
- Add minced garlic and red onion straws and cook for 3-4 minutes.
- Add collard greens and let wilt for a few minutes.
- Season with salt, pepper, nutmeg and cumin.
- Add chicken stock and vinegar and bring to a simmer.
- Let simmer 5-7 minutes and serve.
The King & I Peanut Butter Custard
*This recipe is a work in progress. Admittedly, my custard did not set all the way yielding a consistency that I didn't think was custard-y enough. Stay tuned though for a post re-visiting this delicious dessert's recipe. *
PS - this is also L&S's 100th post. w00T! It's a celebration bitches!! I'm out. ^-^