Southern Fried Chicken Hearts

I know what you’re thinking…..The thought of eating chickens hearts is a bit daunting, if you dont eat offal, or have had really bad memories of it…
A little bit of offal, is quite good and rich in iron and minerals.This is the most ‘mouth-friendly’ offal, as I was inspired by Southern American cooking, and came up with my own take on things.. Most of the recipes used just salt, pepper and flour…I have used the herbs and spices that were available to me. You could also try this with precooked chicken gizzards and beef heart…Just dip in egg before you apply the coating.

 

Ingredients

500 grams-1kg of *Chicken Hearts-Cleaned of surplus fat and vein
200mls to 300mls of Vegetable oil for frying-You may need more or even less if you are frying in batches and the flour turns the oil black.
1-2 Eggs beaten
SEASONED FLOUR:

1 TABLESPOON OF-

Pimenton Dulce(Sweet Spanish Paprika)
Dried Sage
Dried Thyme
Ground Cumin
Powdered Garlic
Salt
500 grams of Plain/Harina Pan-This is a precooked Cornmeal flour(It come in Yellow or White varieties), used in Latino communities, to make Arepas(Corn breads), Tamales etc, and is also good to make a crunchy coating for the hearts, or any other Southern Fried recipe.

**Remember to check that the mixture has enough seasoning, by coating a piece and frying it, and tasting it.

METHOD

Clean the hearts, trimming off any small amounts of fat and more importantly, removing the vein, the slice in half. It helps to prepare the meat a day before usage, to save time, as the vein must be cut off. wash off any blood and place in a colander to drain excess water.

In a bowl, crack an egg or two,(If using two.), and use an electric whisk, or whisk with a manual whisk/fork…Whichever is easier for you. Whisk until foamy and light. Which should only take a few minutes. In another bowl, pour out the flour, and a tablespoon of each of the seasonings. Fold the seasoning mixture,scooping the mixture in from the sides of the bowl and incorporating the seasonings and flour until all of the mixture is thoroughly distributed. Heat some of the oil, and put a small batch of heart halves into the whisked egg/s.

Take the pieces out of the egg and toss into the seasoned flour. Shake off any surplus flour and put into the pan,in small batches on a medium heat to prevent burning.Turn them after about 3-5 minutes, by which time, they should be cooked through and be a golden brown colour. Repeat these steps with every batch, place the cooked hearts and place on kitchen towel, to soak up any extra fat.

Serve with spring greens and mashed potato, with a gravy/sauce of choice…. It is also good with coleslaw and harddough bread(A Jamaican Bread). Divertais!!

* TO CLEAN CHICKEN HEARTS: To do this take a chicken heart and knife, and using the knife hand, grip the knife in your palm, and place a thumb and forefinger near to the blade-Be careful though!
Use a downwards scraping action, to trim the fat from the base of the heart. Use the same action for the top of the heart, but at the same time, slice off the vein which is at the top. Slice each heart in half, and continue with the others. You could also use kitchen scissors to cut off the vein and leave the small amount of fat if you wish.

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