Boy, do I wish air fryers had been invented 20-plus years ago. It has quickly become a very welcome tool in my kitchen, and it doesn’t heat up the house (or the utility bill) like using the oven would in the summertime.
Take last night for example. For a change of pace, my wife and I were interested in having some chicken for dinner. Marinated chicken. Rather than firing up the grill, or turning the oven on to compete with the central air, I decided to use the air fryer to cook the chicken tenders, which had been soaking in herb and garlic marinade since early that morning when I toddled off to work.
I wasn’t completely certain how long to cook the chicken or what temperature, but of course, the Internet helps out with that sort of thing. Finding some other recipes suggested 400°F for 10 minutes on the first side, then 4-5 minutes depending on thickness and number of tenders on the second side. Seeing as the whole idea here was keeping the chicken moist (as well as being sure it was completely cooked) this seemed fairly simple.
Popped the marinated tenders into the air fryer, and they got a nice barbequed look on them after the initial 10 minutes. I checked the internal temperature and we were right on the money. I flipped over the chicken and got my whole green beans cooking in the microwave. After their cook time, they would steam for the amount of time the mashed potatoes were cooking in the microwave as well.
All in all, it came out perfectly. Yes, I know there’s an inordinate amount of butter on both the potatoes and beans, but that’s something I have to work on in the future. I remember a time when my Dad would eat baked potatoes without ANY butter at all.
Kinda looking forward to the next experiment with the air fryer. It’s a very versatile tool. Again, I really wish it had been invented a lot longer ago. (Yes, I know it’s basically a mini-convection oven, which has been around for a long time..but still!)