Cooking with Parma Daze #2 - 'The pork rind experiment'

Hello Hello!

This post was supposed to go up much earlier on the weekend, but things happened that prevented it (mostly me being far too sick to consider writing words).

A few weeks back I was struck with a revelation. Pigs are delicious, chicken parmas are delicious. So how could we combine these magical delights past the simple slice of ham or bacon?

Pork rinds.

I put it out on the social networks to see what kind of response it would get -

Well that was that, I had to give it a try. I was struck down with a sore throat come Wednesday and by the time Thursday had rolled around I was well on the way to being sick - not as bad as I would get later in the weekend, but enough that the CBF’s majorly kicked in and I pushed our scheduled attempt at The Wharf Hotel another week.

I Headed to LaManna and loaded up on supplied for what had been dubbed “The pork rind experiment”

Chicken, ham, cheese, eggs (for crumbing) Leggo’s Napoli, some beer battered chips, nandos perinaise for chip-dippage and a bottle of Tabasco to give the napoli a bit of a kick.

Then there was the star of the day … The pork rinds -

Now I took a lot of pictures of the cooking process, so from here on until the finished product there will probably be more photos than words. Enjoy!

First of all I put the pork rinds in the blender, I wanted them to have a slightly rough texture so I made sure to only use the occasional “pulse” setting to give them a gentle crushing, but not reduce them to pork-paste.

The finished product. It smelled like pork. Pork and salt. But mostly pork

Next up I took out the mallet and went “fifty shades of grey” all over the chicken breast. I’m not a big fan of overly-pounded chicken, so after a few whacks it used the safe-word (“Rasputin” for the curious) and she was ready for the crumbing.

A dip in the egg then into the rind

Voila! Pork rind crumbed chicken schnitzel. at this stage I was optimistic. Doesn’t it look good!

Covered the tray in foil and put her in the oven for 20 minutes, then uncovered for another 20. While I waited I got the chips ready, dosed them with a healthy whack of chicken salt and slid them in alongside the schnitz.

The toppings were watching, ready to go…

And after 40 minutes in the oven, the schnitz was done!

Time for the toppings, all loaded up and ready to go back into the hot box.

After a few minutes she was done!

Once she came out of the oven I assembled the parma on the plate with the chips (which I did manage to overcook slightly, but nothing terrible) Got my chip dip ready, cracked a beer and prepared to tuck in.


I picked up the knife and fork, steadied them in my hands, I could feel my heart pounding as I slowly lowered them to the plate. I pierced the schnitzel with the fork as I brought the sharp knife down to the chicken, tearing through the flesh until I heard the clink  of metal on ceramic.

I lifted the fork, I could feel the added weight of the portion I had cut. As I lifted the chicken the scent of roast pork filled my nostrils. I couldn’t handle it any further. I closed my eyes and ate…

And it was fucking dreadful.

It’s hard to explain just how bad it was without being there to try it. But imagine buying a lemon gelato on a hot summers day, you bring the lemon gelato to your lips but when you bite into it instead of tasting lemon gelato it tastes like BBQ pork ribs.

Now I’m sure those pork ribs are delicious, but when the brain is expecting one thing and gets another it throws it out of whack.  The meal smelled very strongly of roast pork, yet it tasted like chicken parma, and on the travel from plate to mouth my brain got the signal loud and clear that “I’m getting roast pork, yum, I love roast po…OMGWTF WHY AM I EATING PARMA?!”

And the brain confusion wasn’t the only problem, the texture was terrible, I was expecting more of a ‘crunch’ to the crumbs but once they hit the parma they were extremely fluffy, it just didn’t work, as if the parma was covered in a very thin layer of salty marshmallows.

It seems odd to spend an entire post devoted to showing you how to cook something that I’m telling you is absolutely terrible, but thems the breaks.

Hope everyone had a great cup weekend, we’ll be visiting The Wharf Hotel this week, details up Friday (for real this time).

Next week - Parma crumbed in prawn crackers!*

The search continues…

*not really.

Cooking with Parma Daze - 'Southern Style Parma'

Well this is something different! how exciting.

First things first a Happy New Year to everyone reading (if you aren’t reading you can fuck right off), I hope 2012 brings us all sorts of happiness and some truly tasty parmas - and not the end of the world, asshole Mayans.

Now we will be returning to our regularly scheduled programming next week, We will be hitting a pub next Thursday (the 19th) and a few of us even managed to sneak in a parma on New Years Day in Hepburn, more info on that little gem when I get around to it. In the meantime, you get to see photos of my kitchen … fun!

A few months ago a fellow blogger and twitterer known as @_BeerSnob_ Posted a recipe for a ‘Southern Style Chicken Parma’ on his website (check it out for the full recipe as i’ll only be posting snippets here) It intrigued me, and I have been meaning to whip it up since I read it - Well last night I had an opening in my dinner calendar, between Monday night’s Hamburger from the Airport West fish & chip shop and Wednesdays tasting of the meals that will be served at my wedding, Tuesday became an impromptu parma night. I headed to LaManna, loaded up the spices and started MKR - Parma edition.

Now I will warn you there are gonna be a lot of pictures from this point on, and I’m not sure if I’m gonna have much to say in between, but we’ll see how it goes - I have deviated a little from Beer Snob’s recipe in a couple of places, I’ll point em out as we go.

Lets start with the crumbing, in one bowl I beat an egg & added some milk, in the other a decent splash of cornflake crumbs, and in the third there was a plethora of spices - check the recipe for actual amounts but in the end I had something that looked a little like this…

The spices in that second bowl are salt, oregano, garlic powder, thyme, ground ginger, basil, Celery salt, black pepper, dry mustard and a shit load of paprika.

Now on to the star of the show, The original recipe calls for chicken thigh but, as the ladies know, I’m all about the breasts.

Personally I’m not huge on butterflied chicken breasts, so rather than play surgeon I played masochist - covered the chicken breast in a healthy layer of glad wrap and let loose with the rolling pin, after a vigorous spanking I had achieved optimal thickness

I gave the breast a good soaking in the milk (Think Carmen Electra in that scene from ‘The Raven’ - you know the one) Then into the spices - I wasn’t quite sure of the order put forth in the recipe so I went a little off book, giving it a covering in the spices, then back to the egg/milk mixture for adhesion, then into the crumbs for its final coating. chucked it on a greased up oven tray, posed it for a quick photo…

Covered the tray in foil and popped it into the preheated oven. The recipe calls for 30 mins of covered cooking then 20 mins uncovered, while I waited I prepared the side dish…

Good ol’ McCain oven fries - I find the original ones are the best from the bag, oiled up a tray, sprinkled with a liberal dose of chicken salt and slid it in alongside the parma.

Then it was time to wait…

After de-foiling at the 30 min mark and putting her back in for an extra 20 it was time for the toppings

I wasn’t quite sure what brand of everything to get, so I got the first ham that I saw, the cheese had a parma on the bag so that was a no-brainer and the leggos sauce also had Parmigiana on it. Easy done.

I went with the SHNC topping system, starting with the schnitz, then ham, then napoli and cheese on top - I was very liberal with the toppings and wound up with this delicious looking monstrosity…

Fired up the grill function of the oven (quite possibly the first time its ever been used) and chucked her back in.

I killed some time watching youtube videos for 5 minutes and re-approached the oven. Things were looking good except it seemed that the cheese and the napoli had a big fight, and the napoli told the cheese to get out - why can’t they all just get along?

I took a photo, the blast of heat from the oven fogged up the lens, but you get the idea

Not to worry, there was still plenty of cheese still left on the chicken

All that was left to do was to plate it up…

tadaa! No salad, CBF making salad.

The recipe calls for an accompanying IPA, but all I had was Bulmers or some Blueberry Cruisers left over from a NYE party. Bulmers won.

As for taste - Not too shabby if I do say so myself! the coating of spices definitely makes it different but well worth a try, Next time I make it (I will, as I bought a fuck-ton of spices) I don’t think i’ll keep it in the oven for quite as long, maybe 20 mins covered and 20 uncovered.

So if the wife is bugging you with “why don’t you cook dinner for once” chuck one of these babies in front of her and you’re sure to get laid. Guaranteed*.

Well I hope you have enjoyed this little deviation from the norm! Massive thanks to Beer Snob for his recipe!

If you give this parma a go, or have any ideas on how to improve it, send us a pic of your creation on either the Facebook or Twitter! I’d be excited to see other attempts

As I said at the beginning we will be back in force for 2012 starting next week. Catch you then!

The search continues…

*Not a guarantee, although its pretty likely, you’ll at least get a wristie out of it