Curried Chicken Nuggets and Fennel Apple Slaw with A Cinnamon Maple Vinaigrette

I’m feeling a cooking and blogging break coming on as our vacation is only a couple of weeks away, but I still hope to bake something with pumpkin before heading out.  For many reasons Fall is my favorite time of year, there is just something wonderful about the gentle cooling of the air after the heat of Summer.  The acorns have begun falling from the oak trees with the leaves blowing around and covering the yard.  This has absolutely nothing to do with chicken nuggets with a bite of fennel apple slaw or I don’t know? maybe it does.  I rarely eat fried anything but I’m more likely to fry chicken when the outside temperature is cooler.  We normally take a vacation at the end of October when the weather starts to change here and we’ve made many golf trips to the desert in the Fall where it’s still warm.  This year we’re flying to Amsterdam and taking the train with a few stops(Brussels, Paris, Zurich) ending in Rome the second week in November.  I’m thinking about taking a month off with cooking for the holidays to lure me back to my regular schedule of posting when I return.

I feel like I’m showing off because I actually fried something, maybe there’s a doughnut post me.  Why is fried chicken so good?  Apologies to MacDonald operators but homemade chicken nuggets made with skinless boneless chicken breasts from Whole Foods rock and are an entirely different bird than I’ve previously previously tasted after robbing my children’s and grand children’s Happy Meals over the years! Served with the chicken nuggets is another delicious recipe from Two Dudes One Pan, I just love the bites of fresh red grapes in the slaw and will serve this salad in the future with perhaps a more conservative baked chicken dish.

Ingredients And Directions For Curried Chicken Nuggets And Fennel Apple Slaw With A Cinnamon Maple Vinaigrette

For The Curried Chicken Nuggets

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 cup panko bread crumbs, quick whirl in the food processor to give a finer crumb
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1 tablespoon Maharajah curry powder, Penzeys Spices
1 tablespoon Garam Masala, Penzeys Spices
1/2 teaspoons cayenne powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
Sea salt
vegetable oil for frying
2 eggs

Whisk the flour and spices together in a medium bowl.  Place the panko in a separate bowl.  Then put the eggs in another bowl and whisk with a little water.  Cut the chicken into chunks.  Toss the chicken in the seasoned flour, shake off the excess.  Dip the chicken in the egg mixture, make sure they’re well coated.  Then roll the chicken in the finer ground panko.  Pour vegetable oil 1 inch deep in a heavy pan, I used my dutch oven.  Heat the oil until medium hot and fry the chicken nuggets in two batches until brown on one side, flipping once half way to finish cooking, about a minute and a half on each side. Transfer to a plate and season to taste with sea salt.  You can hold the chicken nuggets on a baking sheet in a low 250F oven while you make the slaw.

Fennel Apple Slaw with Red Flame Grapes and A Cinnamon Maple Vinaigrette

For The Slaw
2 Medium fennel bulbs
2 Apples, like Pink Lady, Honey Crisp or Braeburn
1/2 Lemon, juiced
1/2 Cup halved Red Flame grapes
3 Tablespoons toasted almonds
2 Teaspoons chopped chives, extra for garnish
1 2-Ounce chunk Pecorino cheese, shaved with vegetable peeler

For The Vinaigrette
2 Tablespoons grape seed oil, or canola oil
1 Tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 Shallot, peeled and minced
1 Tablespoon Champagne vinegar
1 Teaspoon pure maple syrup
1/4 Teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 Teaspoon sea salt, or more to taste

Halve, core and trim the fennel bulbs.  Peel and core the apples.  Slice the fennel into very thin slices and then into bite size pieces.  Slice the apples very thin and cut into matchstick size pieces.  If you are making the salad ahead of time sprinkle on the lemon juice to prevent browning and set aside.  Whisk the champagne vinegar, maple syrup, cinnamon and sea salt together in a large bowl.  Add the shallots and drizzle in the oil while whisking.  Add the fennel, apples, grapes, almonds and chives, toss to combine.
Serve on individual plates topped with cheese and chives for garnish. Don’t forget  to serve the warm Curried Chicken Nuggets along side.

I am honored to be featured in an interview on my friend Nancy/Spicie Foodie’s beautiful blog in her ‘Favorite Foodie Series’ this week.  If you haven’t paid Nancy a visit at Spicie Foodie please treat yourself to a visit!
Nancy is a young Mexican expat living in Europe who brings us along on  her extraordinary culinary adventure that spans several continents and features spicy dishes from all over the world.  I have been a regular follower of Spicie Foodie for going on a few years now and I don’t like to miss a post.  Since I can’t get enough of her blog I also picked up her cookbook, An Epiphany of the Senses which is available through her site at

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  1. I just finished lunch a short while ago, yet this post STILL made me HUNGRY! Only you could take chicken nuggets to a top-shelf level. That slaw looks great, too! :)

  2. What a spicy way to prepare chicken nuggets. Yum!

  3. Don't feel bad about depriving the grand kids happy meals, they will thank you when they are older. I love home made chicken nuggets, loved how you took them up notches with the slaw. I love the interview you did over at Nancy's. Wish I could stow away in your suitcase.

  4. My 'big' kids would love these! That fennel apple slaw looks so good and a perfect side with the chicken nuggets. Your upcoming vacation sounds wonderful and I hope we hear about it upon your return. :)

  5. I love Fall too! I used to think if I had a baby I would want it in Fall -hahaha silly me. Have fun on your vacation, Patty! I agree anything homemade is way better. I like your take on curry! I'm going to check out your interview with Nancy soon.

  6. These look amazing! The slaw would be the perfect side to them. Enjoy your trip, it sounds fabulous! And I got the cookbook in the mail, thank you very, very much, I'm loving looking through it :)These look amazing! The slaw would be the perfect side to them. Enjoy your trip, it sounds fabulous! And I got the cookbook in the mail, thank you very, very much, I'm loving looking through it :)

  7. Sorry about the double comment, 'puter is playing up. :(

  8. wow, a triple whammy, love that vinaigrette… but I am afraid I am loving the your curry so much more, just great

  9. I'm having trouble deciding which I like better…your yummy nuggets or fabulous slaw. I think I'll have to say both. Off to find your ganache topped brownies :)

  10. I read your interview on Nancy's blog and am so glad I did. Your vinaigrette sounds perfect! Have a wonderful time on your vacation!

  11. Patty-your yummy, crispy and delicious chicken nuggets are a perfect pairing with the refreshing slaw. Love the vinaigrette, as well!
    Gorgeous photos, as always:DDD

  12. Those chicken nuggets look so crispy and fingerlicking! Nice napkin.

  13. Your chicken nuggets with curry powder and fennel apple slaw sounds delicious! Homemade is always so, so much better and I do like the idea of adding some curry powder to the nuggets. The slaw sounds really refreshing too! Have a wonderful vacation! We will miss you.

  14. What would we do without Penzeys?
    The licorice taste of fennel was a nice surprise when I first tried it. Thanks for highlighting it ;)

  15. Patty
    your images are perfect! curry really adds another dimension to chicken nuggets, you got me wondering how my girls would like them!

  16. Patty this looks stunningly delicious. I also don't often eat fried foods but when I do it is french fries. Your chicken nuggets are in a class all their own, McDonalds doesn't even use actual meat and they are just gross! That fennel apple slaw also has my mouthwatering,can't wait to try it.
    I hope you have a fabulous time on your holiday. Good for you for taking a break and allowing yourself to refresh. I also feel one coming on. Thank you for the mention and it was a pleasure having you :) Hugs!

  17. This sounds absolutely wonderful. I love that you put cinnamon in your dressing too. I'll bet you could bake these nuggets or even use chicken breasts and bake it and it would still be yummy.

    Fun recipe and as a slaw lover, I can't wait to try this.

  18. What a wonderful flavor combination. Love the dressing.

  19. This is gorgeous, and I fear quite dangerous as fried foods are my downfall!! I am looking forward to reading about your adventures!!

  20. Patty, I want to try your chicken…sound and look delicious this nuggets with all the spices in it…great paired with the slaw. Interesting that you ground panko.
    Hope you are having a great week and thanks for this yummie recipe :-)

  21. I just LOVE that you made your own chicken nuggets! And maple vinaigrette is divine.

  22. What a lovely, healthy, and TASTY makeover to this tried/true combination. ;-)

  23. Oh wow, do your chicken nuggets look amazing, Patty!! My neice is a chicken nugget fiend and I know she'd be in heaven if I made these for her. :) Hope you have a wonderful time on vacation!

  24. Ohh…Patty…I feel a little envy brushing over me. Well, maybe not because of the chicken nuggets…but your adventure across parts of Europe. Ok, maybe, I'll grab those nuggets, especially that special vinaigrette and make due ;o)

    Congrats on your interview…you deserve being noticed ;o)

    Ciao for now,

  25. Sounds like you have an amazing trip coming up. Hope you blog about it when you get back! Have a terrific time, and thanks for sharing this recipe in the meantime.

  26. There is no comparison between homemade chicken nuggets and McD's! I'm imagining how fantastic this tastes with the fresh grapes and fennel in the slaw and the lovely flavors in your vinaigrette. I'm excited at the possibility that we may be in Paris at the same time! Sending you a FB message with dates and where we are staying – have a great weekend :)

  27. This is just delicious Patty..! AND I'm curious about that vinaigrette..I never used cinnamon, which is of course, more than appropriate here!

  28. Gorgeous!!!

  29. Ok so that apple slaw.. I have to try it! Looks delicious!

  30. Oooh…these chicken nuggets sound really delicious paired with a refreshing apple fennel slaw. Mac D's got nothing on these nuggets! Hope you'll have a wonderful vacation, Patty! We'll sure miss you.

  31. I am loving this slaw and the vinaigrette, looks so delicious! I am sure my kids would enjoy these nuggets as well…great recipes :)
    Hope your vacation is going well…

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