Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Menu planning with the family... Coconut chicken fingers with apricot-ginger sauce

People ask me from time to time how I menu plan.  It's something I really enjoy, this whole food/cooking thing.  I spend my weeks looking at blogs, reading magazines that are passed down from friends and family, ripping out recipes, saving some to my favorites.  I have a 2 pocket folder for each season that I put recipes in. 

Each Sunday I pull out the folder for the season and pick out a recipe or two.  Then I find a couple on my favorites that I like. Then I make a list of the days we'll be home and fill the days in with those recipes.  If I need more, I usually ask my family for suggestions. 

This week Big Man picked coconut chicken fingers.  We've had it once before and it was just okay.  I knew it could be better so I needed to look for another recipe.  I opened up my favorites and saw that I had saved a recipe from one of my favorite food blogs.  

But I wanted a good dipping sauce.  Every time I have coconut shrimp, it's really more about the sauce for me.  So I searched until I found one that would work. 

Then, with my favorite Big Man beside me I took a couple of recipes, put them together and came up with this one. 

Big Man was my guest photographer as well. =)

3 heaping TBSP creamy peanut butter
1/4- 1/2 c skim milk

1 cup shredded coconut, chopped into smaller pieces
1 cup panko bread crumbs
1 1/2 tsp garlic powder
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp curry powder
1/2 tsp onion powder

Chicken tenders (I used just under 2 lbs.)

For Sauce:
1 cup apricot preserves (low sugar is fine here)
1 TBSP soy sauce
1/2 tsp fresh lemon juice
3/4 tsp sesame oil
1/4 tsp ginger powder

Preheat the oven to 450.

Mix the milk and peanut butter together in a small bowl.  Transfer it to a pie plate for easy dipping.
Mix the panko crumbs, coconut and the spices together in another pie plate.

Dip the chicken fingers in the peanut butter mixture, then then coat in the panko mixture.

Place the coated chicken on a foil lined bake sheet.

Bake the chicken for 15-20 minutes or until no longer pink in the center.

While they are baking you can make the sauce.  In a small pan (or a microwaveable bowl if you want to do it in the microwave) warm the jam, soy sauce, ginger and sesame oil together until heated through.

Serve the chicken with a side of the sauce.  At our house we called this dinner Peanut butter and Jelly chicken.  So good!



  1. Sounded crazy but looks so good.

  2. Gonna have to try this one!!
    Good job taking pictures Issack--I think you have a future calling!