These crispy yet succulent chicken tenders have been made from chicken tenderloins, that small strip of very tender meat at the bottom of the chicken breast (that strip that almost falls off the breast when you pull it). You get 2 of them on every chicken, and they are the tenderest bits of chicken you can have. What I do is, every time I buy chicken breasts, I trim off the tenders and accumulate them in my freezer until I can make a full meal out of the lot. If your butcher sells them separately, then you can simply buy them and use. Alternatively, this recipe can be made with strips of chicken breast.
Marinate the tenders with soya sauce, salt, garlic, ginger, lemon, black pepper, chilli powder, cumin and yoghurt for about an hour or up to overnight if you like. This is just to infuse the flavour into the pieces, tenders do not need a lot of marination time as they are already very soft and delicate so you can even cook them straight away.
When ready to fry, remove the tenders from the fridge half an hour before you need them so they come to room temperature to ensure thorough and even cooking.
In a bowl, beat the eggs with the milk and season with salt and pepper.
In a second bowl or plate, pour your breadcrumbs.
Heat oil on medium. Take the tenders, shake off any excess marinade and then dip each one in the egg mixture then roll in the breadcrumbs. Gently lower into the oil to fry. Fry in batches but do not overcrowd the pan. It takes about 3-4 minutes per side, turn and cook the other side. Careful not to have the oil too hot or else they will cook and darken on the outside and remain uncooked inside. Maintain the heat on medium, turn it down if it gets too hot.
Always throw away excess marinade and breadcrumb mixture to avoid any contamination when using fish or chicken
Once tenders are crisp and golden, remove and drain on kitchen towels. Continue until all the tenders are cooked.
Alternatively, you can BAKE these tenders. Follow the same procedure for marinating and coating the tenders. Then place them on a greased tray and bake in a preheated over for about 15 minutes at 180C or until cooked through.
Serve with fries and dip. I have served them with home made curly fries, tamarind chutney and ranch dressing.