Crispy, meaty and tender, these “In the Paint” Rooster Puffs offer a delightful blend of succulent chicken buried in a soft blanket of crispy breading that’s doused with a sweet heat of a simple, spicy sauce to pack lots of fabulous flavor into this little chicken puff.
Can be made ahead and frozen for future “Heat “n” Eat!”
For the 'Paint'
- 1/8 cup chipotles in adobo, pureed
- 1/2 cup honey
- 1/2 cup apricot nectar
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 teaspoon arrowroot powder, or potato starch
For the 'Puffs'
- 1 boneless, skinless chicken breast
- 1 tablespoon avocado oil
- 1/4 teaspoon Hungarian sweet paprika
- 2 cloves garlic, pressed
- 1 shallot, minced
- 1/8 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 medium potatoes
- 2 tablespoons Neufchatel cream cheese
- 1/3 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 cup cake flour
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 1 cup Panko bread crumbs
- 1/2 cup avocado oil
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1 Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees. In a small saucepan, combine pureed chipotles, honey, apricot nectar and vinegar. Bring to a boil then let simmer for 10 minutes.
- 2 In a separate bowl, combine arrowroot powder – or potato starch - and water until it liquefies.
- 3 Using a whisk, blend arrowroot mixture into simmering sauce until it thickens. Remove from heat, strain immediately, discarding solids then set remaining sauce aside to cool.
- 4 Using a rolling pin or a meat tenderizer, pound chicken breast until it is uniform in thickness then, using a sharp knife, cut into thirds long-ways, then cut strips into fifths, creating 15 equal-sized chicken chunks.
- 5 Place chicken chunks on a small jelly roll pan lined with foil then sprinkle with oil, tossing to coat. Sprinkle meat with paprika, pressed garlic, minced shallots, chili powder and black pepper.
- 6 Place chicken in the oven and bake for 10 minutes or until cooked through. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.
- 7 Meanwhile, pierce two potatoes and microwave on high for 5 minutes, turning halfway through and cooking until tender. Once cooked, run potatoes through a ricer to de-skin and mash then place resulting pulp into a medium-size bowl.
- 8 Add Neufchatel cheese and stir until creamy then stir in cheddar cheese to distribute evenly.
- 9 Using a tablespoon, scoop out approximately 15 mounds of potato mixture and place onto a cookie sheet.
- 10 Push one piece of chicken into the middle of each mound then roll, using hands, into a ball and making chicken disappear.
- 11 Line up three small bowls then place flour in the first bowl, beaten egg in the second bowl and Panko in the third.
- 12 Start by rolling each ball in the flour, then rolling in the beaten eggs, then, using a fork, lift from egg then dredge in the Panko breadcrumbs.
- 13 NOTE: If freezing, you can stop here and cover and freeze.
- 14 In a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat oil and then fry puffs on all sides until each puff is golden brown. Remove from oil and drain on a paper or towel-lined plate.
- 15 Once all are cooked, move puffs to a serving platter then drizzle with the “paint” sauce or serve on the side as a dipper, if desired, along with sour cream, if desired.