Crispy Chicken Feet

Years ago when living in Dallas, I would often go and eat dim sum on the weekends, something that is definitely missing in Milwaukee. One of those dim sum items was soft and tender chicken feet. Yep, I tried them (what’s not to try), and I can’t say that I was a big fan on the texture of them. Somewhat gelatinous with too many bones. OK, I was not a fan. But on a recent outing to one of our local ethnic grocery stores, I saw a package of them and decided to make them, only this time crispy. See my oldest is a huge fan of crispy chicken wings, and as these chicken feet with super cheap, I decided I would see if I could crisp them up and not only try them, but to also see if my oldest would eat them, or like them. Indeed he did!

Crispy Chicken Feet Recipe
Crispy Chicken Feet Recipe

Let’s get started.

  • 1 lb of chicken feet, nails removed
  • 3 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 generous pinch of salt
  • 2 cloves of garlic, smashed
  • 4 cups of water, or enough to cover the chicken feet
  • 1 cup of canola oil
  • Your favorite BBQ seasoning
  • parchment paper

Start by clipping the nails off of the feet. I did this by using my kitchen shears and clipping at the knuckle joint. Discard.

To a large bowl, add the feet, and rinse them thoroughly in cold water.

Next, add the feet to a medium sized pot, add the soy sauce, garlic, salt, and cover them with water.

Bring the pot to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and cook for about 2 1/2 hours. Remove the feet to another bowl, let cool, and place in the refrigerator overnight.

Crispy Chicken Feet
Crispy Chicken Feet

The following day, remove the feet, and pour out any excess water.

To a medium sized pot, on low heat, add in the oil. Then after a few minutes add in the chicken feet. At first I was going to deep fry these, but there is so much skin that I knew oil would be popping everywhere, and I did not want that. I simply wanted to slow cook them for about 15 minutes on low heat to continue to cook them. After about 15 minutes, remove them with a slotted spoon or spider, to a paper towel lined sheet pan to let any excess oil drain off.

Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.

To a sheet pan, add the parchment paper to cover. Add the chicken feet and sprinkle your favorite barbecue seasoning all over the feet. Stir around so that all of the chicken feet are covered with seasoning.

Place them into the oven, and slow roast until they are nice and crispy, about 45 minutes to a hour. Every oven is a bit different so keep an eye on them until they are nice and dark golden brown and crispy.

Remove from the oven, place them in a bowl, and dig in.

Were these good? Yeah, they were pretty darn good. My oldest loved them and was eating them all to the base of the feet, and my middle guy was suspicious and tried one and it kind of freaked him out, as they probably might to most Americans. But I will admit that these are common snacks in Asian countries, and if you are looking for something unique to serve up, give these a try. They are cheap, and pretty darn tasty. Hope you enjoy!

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Shan Noodles

I don’t know about you but there are so many times I wake up in the morning and I crave soup. I’m talking about a few in particular, and they are all Asian based soups. Soups like Khao Soi, Pho, or even Khao Poon. These are all noodle based soups, soaked in great curry based broths and they do nothing more than bring awesome comfort to your soul. I love them, and this soup in particular is right up with them. It’s called Shan Noodles, and is a riff on all of the soups mentioned above, and typically in that same region, just north of Thailand and Laos, in the Myanmar region, a hodge podge of various cultures, and when that happens, you know you are going to have some pretty awesome food. This is one of them.

Shan Noodles Recipe
Shan Noodles Recipe

This soup is basic but loaded with tons of flavor, plus it is way too simple to make. You can make this with ground pork or chicken as well, but I choose pork. Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 4 tbsp canola oil
  • 1 1/2 pound of ground pork
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 5 roma tomatoes, grated
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 tbsp Spanish paprika
  • 1 tbsp turmeric powder
  • 4 cups of chicken stock
  • 1 cup of water
  • 2 tbsp roasted peanuts, lightly crushed
  • 1 tbsp fried garlic, optional
  • 1 tbsp fresh cilantro
  • 1 small baby bok choy, chopped
  • salt to taste
  • Rice noodles, cooked al dente
  • 1 green onion, thinly sliced, optional

Start by heating a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add the canola oil, and let it come to a quick simmer. Add in the ground pork, and using a wooden spoon, continue to break up the pork (or ground chicken), and cook until browned.

Next, add in the diced onion and garlic, and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring along the way.

Next, add in the paprika, soy sauce, fish sauce, and turmeric, and stir. Cook for about a minute, then add in the grated tomato. Give this a good stir, and cook for another minute or two. Now add in the water, stir, reduce the heat to a simmer, and cook for about 15 minutes.

How to make Shan Noodles
How to make Shan Noodles

During this time, heat up the chicken stock on the stove on medium heat. Add in the bok choy and let it cook until tender.

Boil water, enough to cover the amount of your rice noodles, and cook until they are al dente, about 5 minutes.

Now you are ready to serve.

Add your cooked rice noodles to your soup bowl. Generously ladle the pork mixture onto the noodles, then add broth to cover the noodles. Add the bok choy, chopped peanuts, fried garlic,and fresh cilantro. Shower with the green onions. Taste, and season with salt.

Dig in. Again, this is like most of those great Asian soups, but something about this one is really special. Sure, it could be the pork mixture, but when everything is brought together it is really, really yummy. Hope you enjoy!

Shan Noodles
Author: 
Recipe type: Soup
Cuisine: Asian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
 
Ingredients
  • 4 tbsp canola oil
  • 1½ pound of ground pork
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 5 roma tomatoes, grated
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 tbsp Spanish paprika
  • 1 tbsp turmeric powder
  • 4 cups of chicken stock
  • 1 cup of water
  • 2 tbsp roasted peanuts, lightly crushed
  • 1 tbsp fried garlic, optional
  • 1 tbsp fresh cilantro
  • 1 small baby bok choy, chopped
  • salt to taste
  • Rice noodles, cooked al dente
  • 1 green onion, thinly sliced, optional
Instructions
  1. Start by heating a large skillet on medium-high heat. Add the canola oil, and let it come to a quick simmer. Add in the ground pork, and using a wooden spoon, continue to break up the pork (or ground chicken), and cook until browned.
  2. Next, add in the diced onion and garlic, and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring along the way.
  3. Next, add in the paprika, soy sauce, fish sauce, and turmeric, and stir. Cook for about a minute, then add in the grated tomato. Give this a good stir, and cook for another minute or two. Now add in the water, stir, reduce the heat to a simmer, and cook for about 15 minutes.
  4. Boil water, enough to cover the amount of your rice noodles, and cook until they are al dente, about 5 minutes.
  5. Now you are ready to serve.
  6. Add your cooked rice noodles to your soup bowl. Generously ladle the pork mixture onto the noodles, then add broth to cover the noodles. Add the bok choy, chopped peanuts, fried garlic,and fresh cilantro. Shower with the green onions. Taste, and season with salt.

 

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Chicken Pho

I’m a sucker for Vietnamese pho. I truly am, and cannot get enough of it. I often think it is due to the delicious broth, but when slurped with some noodles, fresh herbs, and protein, then you really have a great, and I mean a great, meal. To me, Vietnamese pho is best during the morning hours, but for whatever reason any of the pho shops around town only open around 11:00 a.m. I kind of want a bowl of pho at like 9:30 a.m., not 11:30 a.m.! Often times my go to pho is the classic beef parts along with some tripe, but recently I decided to make a batch of chicken pho, and lord almighty it was delicious. Regardless if you are just batching out the stock and going with some spin on a chicken noodle soup, I recommend going full force and making a batch of this chicken pho. It’s comforting and everything you expect in a great pho.

 Chicken Pho Recipe
Chicken Pho Recipe

Let’s get started.

Ingredients for the stock:

  • 2 whole onions
  • 3 inch piece of ginger
  • 2 lb chicken thighs
  • 1.5 lb chicken drumsticks
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 4 quarts of water, to cover
  • 4 tbsp fish sauce
  • 4 whole star anise
  • 1/2 stick cinnamon
  • 1 cup of sake, optional
  • 2 tbsp sugar

Ingredients for the chicken pho:

  • 2 whole boneless, skinless chicken breasts (or thighs if you desire)
  • 1 bag of bahn pho noodles (find at Asian market)
  • 1 whole lime, quartered
  • Sriracha, optional
  • 1 bunch Thai basil
  • 1 whole jalapeno, thinly sliced
  • 1 bunch fresh cilantro, torn
  • 1 bunch bean sprouts
  • 1 bunch of fresh mint, optional
  • 1 bunch bok choy, chopped, optional
  • oyster sauce, optional

Preheat your oven to 450 degrees. Add the onions and ginger to a baking sheet, and place into the oven until they are nice and charred. You can do this on your grill as well if you desire. Once charred, add them to the stock pot, along with the chicken pieces, salt, fish sauce, star anise, cinnamon, sake, and sugar.

Bring the stock to a boil, then reduce the heat. You will notice a bunch of chicken scum come to the top during the simmer. No fear. You want to remove all of this. Use a skimmer to remove the scum, and discard. If you do not have a skimmer, use a large spoon. Continue to remove the scum as it appears.

I cooked my stock for about 6 hours, because, hey, why not? Once thoroughly cooked, strain using a chinois, or another type of strainer over a large pot. I use the chinois, and press the mixture until all of the stock is strained. Let the stock cool, the cover and refrigerate.

When you are ready to use, add the stock (it will be thickened from all of that great chicken fat) to your pot to reheat, letting it come to a boil.

How to make chicken pho
How to make chicken pho

Add in the chicken breast, or thighs and simmer until fully cooked. Remove the chicken, and shred.

Add the pho noodles to a large bowl, and top with hot water. Let the noodles cook in the hot water until they just get slightly tender. Keep an eye on them as you do not want to overcook the noodles.

To serve, strain the noodles and place a generous amount into your soup bowl. Add the chicken, fresh herbs, bok choy and bean sprouts, and ladle in generous amount of the chicken broth.

When you are ready add the lime juice, Sriracha, jalapenos, and oyster sauce, stir, and get your face down into that bowl.

Gosh this stuff was great, and as much as I love the classic beef pho, this just brought that comfort level up with what you might think of a great chicken noodle soup, but elevated to the 10th degree.  Hope you enjoy, and have a great Thanksgiving!

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Bun Bo Hue

For those of you that love Vietnamese pho, you are going to really fall in love with Bun Bo Hue. I know it sounds crazy, and it’s probably hard to pronounce, and hence why you may order #14 off a Vietnamese restaurant menu, and all of that is perfectly fine, but trust me, just trust me on this. You may want to find your local Vietnamese restaurant and order this before making it, and I’m definitely down with that, but if you are craving a great bowl of soup, and one that does take time to make, then this is the one. Similar to pho in a way, but a bit more unctuous and with a different style of noodle, this bowl of soup will have you wanting more, and more.

Bun Bo Hue Recipe
Bun Bo Hue Reciped

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

 

  • 3 pounds ox tail
  • 2 pig’s feet
  • 2 lbs pork shank
  • 2 pounds beef short ribs
  • 1 whole onion, halved
  • 1 head of garlic, peeled
  • 4 ribs celery, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 8 pieces lemongrass, tops removed, smash the remaining stalk
  • 6 whole dried shrimp
  • water, enough to cover the meat
  • 2 tbsp Maggi sauce
  • 4 tbsp sauteed shrimp paste
  • 3 tbsp palm sugar
  • 3 tbsp fish sauce, to taste
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • 2 tbsp annato paste
  • 2 tbsp shallots, diced
  • thinly sliced white onion, about 1/4 cup per serving
  • 1/4 cup Thai basil, per serving
  • 1 cup bean sprouts, per serving
  • Fish sauce to taste
  • 2 cloves additional garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp additional lemongrass, thinly sliced
  • 1 package, bun bo hue noodles, cooked until al dente
  • 1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced
  • limes, cut into wedges
  • Thai red bird chilies, optional
  • spinach leaves, optional
  • pork blood, optional (I am not a fan)

I know, a lot, right? It’s well worth it though, trust me, plus this allows you to up the ante with your Asian ingredients. The end result is a stock so rich in flavor, that you could simply eat it with noodles, but the fresh herbs really bring this soup to the limelight.

Start by getting a large soup pot ready. Add in all of the meat, and cover with about 2-3 inches more of water. Make sure the meat is properly submerged, and bring it to a simmer. During this time, make sure you ladle off any of the scum that comes to the surface. Trust me, there will be plenty of scum.

Boil for about 20 minutes, then strain the meat, and rinse in a  bowl with cold water.

Clean the soup pot, then return the meat back to the soup pot, cover again with water, then add in your lemongrass, garlic, celery, maggi seasoning, fish sauce, dried shrimp, and onions. Bring this to a simmer, then reduce the heat, and cook for for about 3 hours.

Remove the all of the meat, and let it cool. Once cooled, remove as much as the meat from the oxtail, and the feet, and chop it. Do the same with the beef short ribs. Keep the stock simmering.

Bun Bo Hue Ingredients
Bun Bo Hue Ingredients

To a skillet, add in the canola oil, and bring this to a medium heat. Add in the annato paste, shrimp paste, additional garlic,  and shallots. Give this a good stir, and cook for a few minutes on medium heat until the shallots soften. The annato paste is what gives the stock a great color. Now add this to the stock, and give it a good stir.

Now we are ready to serve.

To a serving bowl, add in the cooked noodles, top with random pieces of pork and beef, top with thinly sliced onions, laded in the broth and serve with the sprouts, chilies, and all of the fresh herbs.

The broth. What can’t I say enough of about this broth. It’s super rich, kind of velvety from all of that fat that it was cooked in, and then those awesome thick and rounded noodles. Pho really just met its match, and as much as I am a huge fan of pho,  this bun bo hue just took it to a whole new level. Hope you enjoy!

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