Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Making Chick-Fil-A at Home!

Continuing our series of making foods at home, today we were excited to try to make Chick-Fil-A ourselves!

There's lots of things that come to mind when you think of Chick-Fil-A. One thing we certainly can't forget is the fresh squeezed lemonade. For us, it was freshly squeezed about a month ago. One of my friends has a lemon tree that had a massive amount of lemons on it. I went over and picked 80 pounds and there were still more left on the tree.

Not having immediate plans for 80 pounds of lemons, we juiced them all. I poured the juice into the containers we'd usually use for shaved ice, and when we were done, we had dozens of these pucks of lemon juice. But that does leave us with the question, how much juice is each one of these? math and Science lesson coming up!

First I posed the question to them, what will happen to the water if we put one of these pucks in it?
Ian correctly surmised that the water level would rise.
Excellent! Now let me tell you the story of Archimedes!
Archimedes was born back in 288 BC, so over 2000 years ago! He was a smart scientist and mathematician, and was tasked by the king to figure out a problem with how much gold was in his crown.
The story goes that Archimedes was lowering down into his bathtub when he noticed the water level rising. Understanding that the amount of water displaced was equal to the volume of water he displaced, he knew he had a solution to his problem. He shouted "Eureka!", meaning "I found it", jumped from his tub, and ran naked through the streets shouting Eureka!
The kids thought that part was funny. It also gave me an opening to start introducing them to the PBS show that I grew up with called Square One, a kids show all about Math.

Alright kids, so what have we learned? We could sit around and wait for these lemon juice pucks to melt, and then we'll know for sure how much juice there is. Or... we can put them in a measuring cup and see how much the water level rises.
Let's see. It starts at 2 cups.

And after Ian put in the puck, it rose up to be 3 cups.

Both Alli and Ian were able to work it out, unprompted, that the puck must be equal to about 1 cup. Excellent! Now we can make our recipe!

3 cups juice, 11 cups water, 2 cups sugar. Easy peasy lemon squeezey.

Now one other thing that will just sell this "make at home" is to make some packages. The classic sandwich wrapper is a paper outside with a foil lined inside. Using my printer and a roll of aluminum foil from the kitchen, I was able to make a pretty good approximation I think, even adding in the expanding fold on the sides.

The nugget box on the other hand took a little bit more engineering, with the use of a ruler and pencil.

Traced and cut out, now I just need to fold it. I made sure to leave tabs on the pieces that join together so I could glue everything easier.

Success! That's a good looking nugget box.

The kids were busy with another part of making our dining room more like the restaurant. The ChickFilA dining room has pictures in it, but the one the kids especially remember is the "Eat More Chikin" cows.

They both hung their drawings up on the table. Great job guys! It feels just like we're back in the restaurant.

Time for the chicken! I prepped the chicken the day before, and about 30 minutes before making it I marinated it in pickle juice. From there, I prepped an egg wash and a flour mixture, which does include a little bit of powdered sugar to give it a little sweetness. I followed the recipe for the breading here.

Ah, bringing back old memories. In high school I actually worked at Chick-Fil-A. I did all the jobs, but the one I found myself in most was the kitchen, where part of my job was to bread and then cook the chicken.

And I remember this part too. The part where the breading gets all gummed up and all over your fingers.

Just like the Burger King meal, tonight we're going to have special cups to drink from. Alli and Ian are hard at work drawing logos on our cups.

Next time we'll have to reconsider the washable markers for this project.

Time to eat!

Oh yeah, Theresa made sure to have some waffle fries that we could make in the oven too! I made a fry container to hold them.

For the sandwich we made sure to use a buttered bun, toasted, with two dill pickle slices on the bottom. Just like the restaurant. I have to say, visually it looks just like the real thing.

And as for the nuggets, the box is pretty good. I knew the paper wouldn't hold up too well to the grease of the nuggets.

But it looks great!

The cups are great too. Alli did the one on the far left. And the kids ran to the kitchen and made sure we had red straws for our lemonades.

Chick-Fil-A always gives a few more sauces than needed, so we even had a few real sauces to dip everything in.

The wall artwork.

My plate looks pretty good. It certainly looks the part, but the big question is, how does it taste?
...well it certainly looks the part.
It doesn't taste like Chick-Fil-A. It's not bad by any means, but Chick-Fil-A it is not.

Everyone still thought it was a delicious dinner.

Ian finished his entire sandwich.

And Alli loved her chicken nuggets.

There's one thing that our local Chick-Fil-A has that we don't quite have here. As soon as we arrive at the restaurant, the kids run off to the play place. Theresa and I grab a table and the kids keep playing until the food arrives. We eat and the kids rush off to the play area until it's finally time to go.
The kids said that we've got to have a play area if this is going to be our version of Chick-Fil-A.

Here, let them explain it to you.

It was a fun night!

1 comment:

  1. What a Chick-fil-A restaurant visit!!...decor, food (really went all out on the wrappers, especially the box! did a nice job on the cups, too), and even a play place (bet they had tons of fun creating it). Those waffle fries and chicken sandwiches certainly looked authentic! 80 1lbs of lemons...oh my (and fun, educational Archimedes lesson :-) ) Watching that slo-mo jump by Ian & Alli reminded me of them jumping into a pool...something they just love to do!!! EOM