Friday, June 3, 2011

Old Fashioned Fried Chicken

There’s nothing like fried chicken.  I’m sorry but there is really no suitable substitute.  I love it and try to make it a couple of times a year.  That is just enough for it to always be delicious and just enough that it’s not too much, if you know what I mean.  Not all fried food has to be the devil.  Everything in moderation…best motto ever!

This fried chicken is from one of my favorite cookbooks of all-time:  Cooks Illustrated Best New Recipes.  I have never, ever made something bad from this cookbook and they also have one for those of you who like watching your calories a bit more:  Cooks Illustrated Best Light Recipe!

I made this yummy meal about a month ago on our first really nice spring night.  It was a picnic indoors type meal that was bursting with wishes of summer.  I served it along with Old Fashioned Carrot Salad by Ina Garten, a yummy salad of carrot shreds, pineapple, and yogurt, and Sour Cream Cucumbers, also by Ina Garten.  So delicious. 

It’s the star of the meal!

Old Fashioned Fried Chicken
adapted from Cooks Illustrated Best New Recipe via Framed Cooks
  • 1 cup kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 3 heads of garlic, cloves separated
  • 3 crumbled bay leaves
  • 2 quarts buttermilk
  • 1 whole chicken, cut into pieces. Breasts should be cut in quarters.
  • 4 cups flour
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 4 cups peanut oil

1. Combine salt, sugar, paprika, garlic and bay leaves in a large ziplock bag. Using a mallet, smash garlic into salt mixture thoroughly. Pour mixture into large bowl and add 7 cups of buttermilk. Stir until salt is dissolved, immerse chicken and refrigerate for 2-3 hours.

2. Remove chicken from buttermilk brine and shake off excess. Place in single layer on wire rack set over rimmed baking sheet. Refrigerate uncovered for 2 hours.

3. Put flour in shallow dish. Beat egg, baking powder, baking soda in medium bowl, stir in remaining cup of buttermilk. Working in batches of three, drop chicken in flour and shake pan to coat. Using tongs, dip chicken in egg mixture and then coat in flour again. Return to wire rack.

4. Heat oil to 375 degrees (using instant read or candy thermometer) in large Dutch oven. Place chicken pieces skin side down in hot oil. Don't crowd chicken -- you will probably have to work in batches. Fry until golden brown on the bottom, about 6-8 minutes. Turn over and continue to fry until second side is golden, another 6-8 minutes.

5. Using tongs, transfer cooked chicken to paper towel-lined plate and drain for 2 minutes. Transfer to wire rack placed on baking sheet and keep warm in 200 degree oven while remaining chicken is fried.

1 comment:

  1. Oh're bringing back memories of my mama's good ole southern cookin'! We had fried chicken often when I was growing up. Now that we're all trying to eat more healthy; we never fry it anymore. But now that I see this recipe; there's nothing wrong with an occasional indulgence of this good stuff. :-)