Southern Fried Chicken
Growing up in Queens, I always liked fried chicken, but never really loved it. I only really had KFC and Popeye’s. This all changed in 2007, after visiting The Lady & Sons.
That’s right, Paula Deen’s restaurant in Savannah, Georgia. Later in that same road trip, I had my second favorite fried chicken ever, in Dollywood* (who knew.) Since then I have been pretty obsessed with fried chicken, but never really thought to make it myself.
*That road trip also started my Barbecue obsession, but that’s another story.
For some reason the Idea only hit me about a month ago, and that’s all I have been really thinking about (just ask my Wife (Borat Impression)).
The only thing standing in my way was my yearly check-up. Not wanting to inflate my cholesterol, I** decided to wait until after the test. But I didn’t wait long, because Doctor checkup day was also Fried Chicken Day!
The nerd that I am, I did plenty of research, youtube videos, recipes, doing Paula Deen impressions, etc. Combining the basic idea of a few recipes I found on the internet, I formulated my own. Starting with a 6 hour buttermilk / hot sauce brine, mixed with some other spices as well. I would have marinated it overnight, but I forgot to defrost the chicken.
After a few hours to soak in, it was time to make the flour breading. I wanted the chicken spicy, so I put a ton of Cayenne in, knowing a lot of it would get lost in the flour. Also added some Paprika, salt, pepper, garlic and onion powder.
After I had them all breaded, it was time to heat up the oil. Many of the recipes called for Peanut oil, so that’s what I used. I picked up a candy thermometer, since temperature of the oil is really important when frying. Too low, and the chicken will soak it all up and be soggy, too hot and the oil will reach it’s smoking point, and burn. Once it hit 350 degrees, it was time to fry. I*** also decided to pick up a splatter screen, to keep the kitchen tidy.***my wife (Borat Impression)
Once I dropped the chicken in, the crackling was like music to my ears. I wasn’t exactly sure how long to cook the chicken for, so I took them out whenever they looked done to me, and put them in a baking pan into the oven. I wanted to make sure the chicken was cooked all the way through, but not burn the outside.
My house was filled with the delicious fumes of fried chicken, I wish I could smell like that all the time (Fried Chicken eau de toilette™.) I couldn’t wait to dig in. On a side note, I went with just thighs and legs because thighs are the best, and it was on sale, next time I will through some white meat in there too (Healthy!)
The chicken was so good, I can’t wait to fry again. The buttermilk and hot sauce made the inside so juicy and flavorful, and the outside was really tasty too. It had a little bit of heat to it, but I wish it was a little more. next time I will be a bit more heavy-handed with the spices on the chicken. All in all, I can’t wait to make these again. I wouldn’t change much at all. You can’t get fried chicken better than this in New York, and frequent trips to Georgia might be too expensive.
My wife was in charge of the side dish. Jalapeno cheddar corn bread. I love cornbread and it goes perfectly with fried chicken. And the Jalapeno and Cheddar made it even better. I think this exact meal will be duplicated very soon. Good work, Marisa.