There is one thing I typically don’t do: fry anything. It’s messy. It’s smelly. It’s fattening. So, I don’t like to deal with it. But there is one dish I recently set out to master that defies that rule: fried chicken.
There is almost nothing better than great fried chicken. The dish is so nostalgic to me. It reminds me of my southern upbringing. It makes me fondly think of so many special occasions. It brings back memories of my aunt and cousins, because every time they visit me in Jackson, I beg her to make it (she’s really good at it).
And since there aren’t many cooking projects that I am afraid to tackle, I decided it was time to take this one on. After my husband’s failed attempt at cooking a fried turkey on Thanksgiving, I was determined to get this one right.
Our neighbor (who also happens to own Trio and Local) lent us his deep fryer in the Fall. Being the derelict neighbors that we are, we still have it (though Will swears he doesn’t need it until hunting season). So, that part of the program was taken care of.
Next came the research. There are so many different methods for making fried chicken. You can pan fry it and finish it in the oven. You can brine it. You can coat it with one dip into flour. Soak it in buttermilk or coat it in egg. There are as many options as there are meals the dish is good for.
When I am trying something new, I like to explore all my options and come up with my own version of the dish based on what I have learned and what I think sounds best. In this case, I decided on a buttermilk brine, a double coating of flour and using the deep fat fryer as my plan of attack.
Our chicken turned out perfectly. Dare I say, it was the best fried chicken I have ever had. The trick is to follow these instructions well and to over season to ensure flavor. While I won’t be doing this often, I will be making this delicious chicken at least once or twice a year now that I have mastered the technique.
Note: this recipe requires soaking the chicken overnight. Proportions/measurements depend on tastes and how many pieces of chicken you are cooking.