The people are going to be up in arms after they see this.
I might have to hide from every born and bred southerner that I know.
In fact, I wouldn’t even be surprised if Emeril and Paula Deen come a-knocking. And demand to know what’s what.
I won’t have any idea what to say.
I’ll probably have to offer them some tea mixed with Ambien. It will be my only recourse.
People can be very protective of their fried chicken and waffles, you see. And here I am.
A Yankee, of all people, who has never in her life had real serious fried chicken and waffles.
Doing all sorts of disastrous things to them.
For example. I baked the chicken. And spiced it up. With some tepin chiles. Those little red balls down there. That’s them. Ain’t they cute and innocuous looking. Don’t be fooled.
They’re hot baby. Damn hot.
And then I smothered it. Neither in gravy nor tried and true maple syrup. But in a juniper-infused pomegranate maple syrup.
I know you have no idea what juniper is. I didn’t either until it arrived on my doorstep last week.
It’s a berry. It tastes kind of like pine. It’s beautiful when simmered with pomegranate juice for an hour and then mixed with maple syrup. And that’s all you really need to know.
Okay so at this point you are asking yourself whether, during birthday week, I have drank so much tequila that I am now speaking in tongues. Not so.
Here’s what happened.
MarxFoods invited me to participate in their Ridiculously Delicious challenge. I said hands down absolutely yes.
So they sent me 8 random ingredients. Most of which had weird unpronounceable names.
I could pronounce all of them. Except for maybe the “szechuan” in szechuan peppercorns. I’ve never really done well with that one even though every other Chinese take-out place in this city uses it in it’s name. And that, my friends, is why I don’t eat Chinese take-out. Excessive, I know. But that’s how I roll.
My point is that they’re not the kind of ingredients that you find in your local supermarket. Iranian saffron. Coconut sugar. Grains of paradise. Dill pollen.
Those kinds of things.
And so when I saw this list of eight things. I singled out the tepin chiles and juniper berries. And thought to myself that I should make fried chicken and waffles. No rhyme or reason other than that it just seemed like a good idea. I didn’t even own a waffle iron before this.
But I followed my dreams. And they led me here. I now own a waffle iron and shall be eating these fried chicken and waffles for the next four days. And damn. I couldn’t be happier.