My idea of planning for dinner is to pull something out of the freezer in the morning and hope that it's defrosted enough by the time I come home so I can whip something together. I don't remember why I bought ground chicken, but there it was, slowly defrosting in the fridge. The idea of rosemary chicken meatballs is floating around in my head randomly, so maybe that's the original purpose of the chicken, but I didn't have any rosemary and with J being on a picky eating streak, I needed something simple, quick and easy to eat, preferably dip-able and fun for little fingers.
I present my spur of the moment Baked Ground Chicken Nuggets. It's probably not the most appetizing title in the world, but the end result was actually quite delicious! I started with a recipe from the Betty Crocker Cookbook, and then took it for a spin.
1 lb ground chicken
2 tbs milk
1/2 C bread crumbs (or panko)
1/4 C onion, diced
1 tsp Worchestershire sauce
salt and pepper to taste
1. Pre-heat over to 400 degrees. Grease a baking pan with cooking spray.
2. Mix the chicken, milk, egg, 1/2 C bread crumbs, onion, Worchestershire sauce, salt and pepper in a mixing bowl.
Tip #1. Sweat the diced onion first for a sweeter taste. (I was
lazy short on time and just threw it in raw, worked fine for me.)
Tip #2. Use your hands to mix together. Gross but way more effective than a spoon.
3. Pour 1 cup of panko in a shallow dish.
4. Using a spoon or your hands or an ice cream scooper, make a very vague meatball from the chicken mixture.
5. Roll it lightly in the panko to cover completely.
6. Set it aside on a greased baking pan.
7. Repeat until all chicken is in "vague meatball" form on the baking pan.
8. Use your fingers and lightly press down on each meatball to form a slightly flattened chicken nugget.
Tip #3. If you have any panko left in the dish, you can add more panko to each nugget for a crispier crunch.
9. Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes.
My nuggets did not come out golden brown, although I imagine a couple of minutes under the broiler would do the trick. Looks didn't really matter in this case, since it ended up being really good, really fast, and really easy!