Late last week we received our copy of America’s Most Wanted Recipes – unfortunately a little too late to allow us to take part in the America’s Most Wanted Recipes Taste Test blog event that was held on September 14.
But we decided to continue with our taste test anyway – there are a lot of interesting looking recipes in this book, including ones from restaurants we’ve only heard of but have never dined at before.
The Taste Test involves making a recipe from the book, as well as eating that same recipe from the actual restaurant itself. We’re in Canada, so unfortunately our choices were somewhat limited. Ward made three recipes from the book, two of which we were able to compare to the “real thing”, and one for which we had to rely on our memories of sampling.
KFC’s original fried chicken, as well as the biscuits to go with them, and The Outback’s Walkabout Soup.
There’s a KFC nearby, but unfortunately The Outback Restaurant near us closed down a while back so we had to rely on our memories of the soup (or rather, Ward had to rely on his memories of the soup – it’s one of his favorite things on The Outback menu).
As always, Ward prepped all the ingredients first:
Yes, that is a very big container of Crisco you see in the top picture: the KFC recipe requires deep frying in either lard or Crisco. We opted for the slightly healthier choice.
And the bag of white stuff next to it? That’s MSG (monosodium glutamate). The recipe also calls for “Accent”, which Ward couldn’t find at our grocery store, so he Googled it and it turns out Accent is MSG!
First up, the chicken and biscuits. We both thought the biscuits were very similar to KFC’s biscuits. KFC doesn’t have the best biscuits in the world; they’re good but not great, as were the ones we made.
The fried chicken was delicious, but we thought it didn’t have quite the same flavour as KFC’s original fried chicken. Our pieces were juicy and tender, too, which impressed us, as we both find KFC’s breast pieces to be on the dry side. We actually liked the chicken Ward made better than KFC’s, even though the taste wasn’t exactly the same.
America’s Most Wanted Recipes’ version of The Outback’s Walkabout Soup, on the other hand, was both a big hit with everyone and a twin to the one served at the restaurant, in Ward’s opinion. Since this is what he always used to order when we’d go out to The Outback, I’ll take his word for it.
I don’t normally care for cream-based soups, but I found this soup to be lighter tasting than most cream soups, and the flavour was wonderful. Ward’s even happier, since we no longer have a branch of The Outback close enough for him to get his fill of the Walkabout Soup; now he can make it whenever he feels like it!
So our experience with America’s Most Wanted Recipes has been good so far. Another thing we really like is the opportunity to prepare and sample some signature dishes from restaurants we’ve heard about but don’t have here in our part of Canada!