I have a love hate relationship with making fried chicken. I love it so, but hate how full of fail my past attempts have been. I am not one to give up! I recently acquired a brand new cast iron skillet and decided to try again; hopefully not in vane.
I decided to research recipes. I wanted a recipe that would allow for a juicy inside and a nice crispy outside (without the crust falling off). I think I have found a winner.
I went with Alton Brown’s fried chicken recipe and it was a success. Finally!
What I really like about this recipe is he gives you the ingredients to make a fantastic seasoning. This seasoning is key. The recipe makes a lot so just put it in an airtight container for later use.
I was always one to season the flour and not the meat. This recipe has you liberally seasoning the meat and using a minimal amount of unseasoned (no salt, no pepper, no nothin’) flour. What you get is outstanding tasting chicken.
Because most of the flour is shaken off before the chicken is placed in the hot grease, you are left with a super crunchy outside that actually…wait for it….stays on the chicken. You will also have a nice, juicy inside. Score! Seriously, if you only knew my past fried chicken fail you would totally understand my excitement.
Fried chicken isn’t scary anymore. I implore you to try this recipe.
Recipe copied and pasted from the Food Network Website.
- 1 broiler/fryer chicken , cut into 8 pieces (I bought a fryer already cut up)
- 2 cups low fat buttermilk
- 2 tablespoons kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons Hungarian paprika
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- Flour, for dredging
- Vegetable shortening, for frying
Place chicken pieces into a plastic container and cover with buttermilk. Cover and refrigerate for 12 to 24 hours. This is important. It will tenderize and give your chicken a nice tang flavor.
Melt enough shortening (over low heat) to come just 1/3-inch up the side of a 12-inch cast iron skillet or heavy fry pan. Once shortening liquefies raise heat to 325 degrees F. Do not allow oil to go over 325 degrees F.
Drain chicken in a colander. Combine salt, paprika, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper. Liberally season chicken with this mixture. Dredge chicken in flour and shake off excess. This is important. The more flour you keep on the more it will fall off and burn in the pan.
Place chicken skin side down into the pan. Put thighs in the center, and breast and legs around the edge of the pan. The oil should come half way up the pan. Cook chicken until golden brown on each side, approximately 10 to 12 minutes per side. More importantly, the internal temperature should be right around 180 degrees. (Be careful to monitor shortening temperature every few minutes.)
Drain chicken on a rack over a sheet pan. Don’t drain by setting chicken directly on paper towels or brown paper bags. If you need to hold the chicken before serving, cover loosely with foil but avoid holding in a warm oven, especially if it’s a gas oven.