When I woke up, I talked to the best friend some more (well duh) and finally I realised...hrm, its almost six, I haven't eaten and I had to feed myself! I mean what a concept! I haven't had to really feed myself Sunday dinner in so long...let me stress. Sunday dinners in a Jamaican house is a huge deal. We cook the good stuff because we don't have time during the week to have family dinner. So on Sundays, we live it up.
|After the chicken was cleaned|
I know, I washed it a lot, but growning up I was always taught to wash it as much as I can because meat sits around for heaven knows how long before its actually packaged and blah blah blah food poisoning, blah blah blah. Anywho, this mean you can make with basically any part of the chicken but I would suggest the breasts or the legs. The wings doesn't have as much meat as you'd need. Anywho, after it was cleaned up, I put on a frying pot, that's what we call it but I think you guys call it a skillet? I don't know a pot that you fry in. My family uses a cast iron one and its amazing. So, you put it on and let it sit on the fire for a bit...you need it to get REALY hot then pour in some canola oil--am talking so hot that you can see waves in it. While this is happening, drain the chicken. Take it out of the water, you may want to get a bunch of paper towels and pat it dry. If you don't want to do that, then drain it as best you can then place them on a flat plate to drain more. When they are drained, sprinkle with salt, and ground pepper.
Once the oil is hot, put the chicken pieces in. Do not drop them in because the last thing any of us want is a face full of hot oil. Once all the pieces are in, cover it. Because once chicken is frying it tends to pop...again, face full of hot oil is no fun. And do not fry in a short sleeve shirt or lingerie... ok going in. Once in a while, go in and turn the meat. Make sure it's burning on each side. Once that's done, pour off all the oil. Some people take the chicken out, pour off the oil then put the chicken back in. Some, who's had more practise, just pour off the oil with the chicken still in the pot. Which ever is safer for you. Becareful to wipe off excess oil from the outside of the pot before placing it back on the burner. You don't want an oil fire.
|Onion and margerine added|
|Flour in water|
Once you're the meat is ready, what we do is get some water and add some flower. The water has to be cold before you add the flower. You can also use corn starch but corn starch taste funny to me. Moving on, do it right before you need it, otherwise it will settle and you'll have to mix it again. Don't make it too thick. Add it the meat and make sure it's mixed in. I suggest using a large spoon and add the mixture of flour water a little at a time. This makes the liquid thick and makes your gravy.
Turn the stove on low and let it simmer a little bit. Make sure you taste it from time to time to make sure you have enough spice and salt. Make sure it's not missing anything. Make sure when you poke the chicken it doesn't run red. If it runs red, you need to add more water and let it simmer some more. You don't want red, red is bad. Red means food poisoning...
|When the crackers are added|
Once its done simmering, get the hard crackers--they're made by Excelsior--it's a Jamaican brand. But these crackers have a hard crunch...you can find them in a West Indian grocery store. Turn the stove way down, and drop them on the top of the meat. Don't mix them in, just spread them across the top. If you mix them in they are going to suck up the gravy and get soggy. Cover the put. Let it sit like that for about ten to fifteen minutes to let the steam make the crackers soft. Go mix your drink or watch some TV or something and just let the steam and the spice from the heat soak through the crackers. When you're ready to eat, the crackers will be soft, and splitting open from the heat. That's precisely what you want. Put a piece of the chicken on a plate, then scoop out some crackers. Adding the gravy on top of that with the cooked onions and tomato. Sprinkle the gravy across the crackers, now is when you want the gravy to be mixed with the crackers. Now you don't want to eat this cold, you want it to still have some steam to it when you sit down to eat it.
|Final Product. The "Exel-cious Chicken"|
And this is what I had for dinner! It was yummy! Just don't tell my family. They're going to start thinking I am mature enough to take care of myself..pfffft