Thursday, November 8, 2012

Ultimate Fried Chicken

Yesterday when I asked my husband what he wanted for dinner he said, "fried chicken". Aw rats!  I mean...great, honey! Fried chicken isn't hard, it's just MESSY and time consuming. Lucky for him, I caught The Help on tv again this weekend. When Minny was teaching Celia Foote how to fry chicken, and she used a big paper bag to bread it- my curiosity was raised. That's one of the messiest parts of fried chicken...the breading! Here we go...
 The store I went to didn't have any chicken with the bone in it, so I bought a whole chicken, and we cut it up into pieces. Who knew it was so easy? Buying the chicken whole is so much cheaper, so I think we'll be doing that from now on for fried chicken.

Cut up your chicken. Get out a paper bag (it kind of weirded me out at first, thinking there could be germs in the bag, but then I remembered that no germ can survive the amount of heat this chicken is going to cook in), dump a few cups of flour in it. I didn't measure, I just went for it. Here's where I have to estimate, because I didn't anticipate blogging about this recipe, but someone asked for it. ;) Shake in however much seasoned salt, garlic granules, and pepper as you'd like. A little tip: add more than you think you'll need because some of it will be left behind in the flour you throw away. I'm thinking it might be 2 Tbsp. each of seasoned salt and garlic, and 1 Tbsp. pepper, but that's just an estimate. Mix the seasonings up with the flour.

Have your oil pre-heating on the stove. You need it hot when the chicken is breaded. It sounds crazy, but it's really important to use a lot of oil. I know, I know, but if  you have it hot enough when you drop the chicken in, it kind of seals the chicken, and you're left with juicy chicken inside when you're done. If you skimp on the oil, you might as well not make fried chicken. It won't cook right. I used two big skillets, and divided a regular size bottle of oil, and a half between them.

Beat 2-3 eggs in a dish.

VERY important! Dip your chicken, a few pieces at a time (don't crowd the bag) in the flour BEFORE you dip them in the egg! Your egg has to have something to stick to or it will fall off of the chicken, and so will your batter. So! Light coating in the flour mixture bag, then into the egg, then back into the bag to pick up a lot of the seasoned flour. Then straight into the hot oil.
 I'd like to tell you a cooking time, but since every piece of chicken is a different size, you need to watch them. Flip them about every 7 minutes or so, and turn down the heat to medium after the initial browning on both sides. The big breast pieces take about 35-45 minutes, depending on their size. Legs and thighs about 25-35 minutes. Wings about 20. If you're not sure, take it out of the pan, and poke through with a fork, if the juice runs clear, it's done.Remember this meat has bones in it, so it takes longer.

Have a tray ready, with a cooling rack on top of it. I like this method better than paper towels because the bottom doesn't get soggy. The oil will drip off and your chicken will be crunchy all around!
Hopefully my directions are easy enough to follow! If you skip steps to save time, your chicken will suffer. I've been making fried chicken since I was a young teenager, and my husband said last night's was BEST I've ever made. He wouldn't stop talking about it. Enjoy!

2 comments:

  1. Yum. I'm going to try your recipe. I'm weirded out about the paper bag too, but you have a good point...nothing's going to live being dumped in boiling oil. Your chicken looks great!

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  2. If you hadn't credited HELP I would have thought you learned from my mom

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