Bacon Waffle and Fried Chicken Sandwich

September 17, 2014 1:11 am Published by Leave your thoughts


“Belle Gem” Bacon Waffle and Fried Chicken Sandwich

This recipe is from Kitchen 208 restaurant located in Charleston, SC. Their signature sandwich, the “Belle Gem” features fried chicken sandwiched between two bacon waffle “buns.” Kitchen 208 is the only place on King with great fare and fresh air. Need we say more? Let our open kitchen, fresh house made ingredients + whimsical menu tell the story. Our heart of pine floors + 100-year old brick walls can do the talking. See for yourself from a spot on our breezy street side patio. It’s a fun fast casual restaurant on lower King Street. A new gathering place. Great fare, fresh air: served daily at 208 King Street. Follow them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest for more recipe ideas.

Belle Gem Kitchen 208

Kitchen 208 Belle Gem Sandwich
(Yields 8 sandwiches)

2 cups buttermilk
¼ cup Texas Pete hot sauce
¼ cup pickle juice
8 boneless skinless chicken thighs or breasts, slightly flattened

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon kosher salt
2 eggs, separated
2 cups buttermilk
1 lb. applewood smoked bacon, diced and rendered (reserve drippings)
Up to ¼ cup melted butter

½ cup heavy duty mayonnaise (Dukes recommended)
¼ cup whole grain mustard

2 cups buttermilk
2 cups all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons smoked paprika
1 tablespoon granulated garlic
1 tablespoon granulated onion
2 teaspoons mustard powder
2 tablespoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried sage

8 slices swiss cheese
8 thick slices of vine ripened tomatoes
8 pieces of crisp iceberg lettuce

Prepare the chicken.
Remove any extra skin and fat from the chicken, place between two pieces of plastic wrap and flatten slightly with a rolling pin to ensure even cooking. Mix the first 2 cups of buttermilk with the hot sauce and pickle juice and pour over chicken. Allow to marinate 6 to 8 hours, or overnight. Drain and rinse chicken and pat dry.

Prepare the waffle batter.

Place the bacon in a single layer on a large sheet pan and bake at 375 degrees until bacon is crisp, approximately 20 minutes depending on your oven, rotating 2 to 3 times to ensure even cooking. Remove the bacon to a paper towel lined pan to cool and reserve the bacon drippings. Crumble the bacon and set aside. Pour bacon drippings through a fine chinois or mesh strainer. Combine with the melted butter to bring the total volume up to ¼ cup. Depending on your bacon, the butter may not be necessary.

In one bowl combine the 2 cups of all purpose flour, baking powder and salt. In a second bowl, whip the egg whites to soft peaks. In a third, larger bowl whisk together the egg yolks and buttermilk. Carefully combine the dry ingredients with the buttermilk mixture, ensuring that the dry ingredients are fully incorporated without over mixing. Next stir in the butter. Gently fold in the egg whites so as to retain their volume. Lastly, fold in the bacon crumbles.

Prepare the dressing.

In a small mixing bowl whisk together the mayonnaise and mustard until smooth.

Assembling the final product.

Preheat the Belgium waffle iron. Spread 6 ounces of waffle batter evenly across all four squares and close the lid but do not flip. The goal is to achieve a ¾ thickness waffle with one side fully formed and the other relatively flat. The flat side will face the inside of the completed sandwich. Repeat 3 more times until you have cooked 16 waffle squares. Lay waffles out in a single layer on a sheet pan.

Mix the last set of dry ingredients in a shallow pan to create the chicken breading and place the last 2 cups of buttermilk in a separate shallow pan. Dredge each piece of chicken first in the seasoned flour, then in the buttermilk, then back in to the flour. Press gently to ensure each piece is well coated. Gently place the chicken in a 350 degree deep fryer. Cook until golden brown and the internal temperature reaches 170 degrees. Place chickens on a sheet pan and cover each with a slice of swiss cheese.

Flash both the pan of waffles and the pan of chicken in a 375 degree oven until the cheese is melted and the waffles are all hot and crisp, 3 to 4 minutes. Place the chickens on half the waffle squares. Dress the other half of the waffle squares with the mustard aioli. Place lettuce and tomato slice on top of each chicken then top with the aioli dressed waffle square to complete the sandwich.

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