Buttermilk-and-Blue Waffles with Buffalo Whiskey Crispy Chicken

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 1 hr
  • Active: 1 hr
  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings
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Ingredients

Waffles:

Butter or nonstick cooking spray, for greasing the waffle iron

2 cups all-purpose flour 

2 tablespoons sugar 

2 teaspoons baking powder 

1 teaspoon baking soda 

1 teaspoon salt 

2 cups buttermilk 

2 large eggs 

8 ounces (about 1 1/2 cups) smoked blue cheese crumbles or blue cheese of your choice, crumbled 

Seasoning Flour:

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon smoked paprika 

1 tablespoon kosher salt 

2 teaspoons ground cumin 

2 teaspoons ground mustard 

2 teaspoons granulated onion 

2 teaspoons ground black pepper 

2 teaspoons cayenne pepper 

2 teaspoons baking soda 

Brine:

1 quart (4 cups) buttermilk

2 tablespoons hot sauce 

1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon kosher salt 

2 teaspoons ground celery seed 

1 teaspoon smoked paprika 

1 teaspoon ground black pepper 

Fried Chicken:

Oil, for frying

8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs 

Buffalo Whiskey Sauce, recipe follows

Sweet pickle chips, for garnish

Chopped scallions, for garnish 

Buffalo Whiskey Sauce:

1/2 cup hot sauce, such as Frank's Red Hot

1/4 cup maple syrup or honey 

3 shots (4 1/2 ounces) bourbon whiskey 

3 tablespoons butter 

3 tablespoons tamari 

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

4 cloves garlic, finely chopped 

Directions

Special equipment:
a deep-frying thermometer; a waffle iron
  1. For the waffles: Preheat a waffle iron and keep a little melted butter or cooking spray on hand to grease it.
  2. Whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl. Whisk together the buttermilk and eggs in a medium bowl, then whisk the wet ingredients into the dry. Stir in the blue cheese crumbles. Set the batter aside.
  3. For the seasoning flour: Mix together the flour, paprika, salt, cumin, mustard, granulated onion, black pepper, cayenne and baking soda, and divide between 2 plates or shallow bowls.
  4. For the brine: Mix together the buttermilk, hot sauce, salt, celery seed, paprika and pepper, and divide between 2 plates or shallow bowls.
  5. For the fried chicken: Set a rack into a baking sheet. Heat a few inches of oil in a Dutch oven or deep-fryer to 365 degrees F. Coat the chicken in the brine, then the flour, then the brine and flour a second time; shake off excess and place on the rack.
  6. Grease the waffle iron. Add the batter and cook on high until deep golden. Cut into 4 waffles. Repeat until the batter is finished.
  7. Fry the chicken in batches, stirring occasionally, until deep golden and cooked through, 8 to 10 minutes.
  8. Top the waffles with 2 pieces of chicken and some Buffalo Whiskey Sauce. Garnish with a few pickle chips and some scallions.

Buffalo Whiskey Sauce:

  1. In a small pot, melt together the hot sauce, maple syrup, whiskey, butter, tamari, Worcestershire and garlic. Simmer to thicken, then remove from the heat.