10/5/07

Fried Chicken Hints


One of my top 10 foods would probably include fried chicken. I love KFC but we rarely eat 'out' (which includes both restaurants and fast food) so I typically only get KFC once a year - on the road on our way to Myrtle Beach for our annual vacation to the coast! When I was pregnant with our oldest child I craved KFC throughout my entire pregnancy. Unfortunately we were young and dirt poor and living in Southern California... land of high rent and credit cards. We could barely afford to buy groceries, much less wasting money on fast food so needless to say I went the entire 9 months without being able to give in to my KFC craving.

I do make fried chicken here at home about once or twice a year. I start to think about chicken with a side of mashed potatoes, gravy and big fluffy biscuits. Yum! What a great cold weather comfort meal. There are a few hints to fried chicken and I thought I would just brain storm a couple for you.

  • *Soak the chicken pieces in a salt water mix or in buttermilk for at least an hour or two before using. I let them soak all day or overnight.
  • *Use self-rising flour for a thicker crust.
  • *I like a simple mixture of flour, salt and peper with a touch of paprika for color and sometimes a teaspoon or two of a chicken seasoning mix like Montreal or similar.
  • *Dip your pieces in a beaten egg, then dredge in the flour mixture. Set on foil or waxed paper and let set for at least 10 minutes. It's even better if you can refrigerate or freeze them for 10 minutes to help the breading set.
  • *Make sure your oil is hot when you add the chicken. If your oil is too cold the breading will soak up the oil and become a greasy mess that falls off your chicken. 350 degree's is good.
  • *Do not let your oil become too hot! Your chicken should be able to cook in the oil for at least 20-25 minutes for each side without becoming too brown or burnt. If your chicken burns within 5 minutes your oil is too hot. You want a nice golden brown color.
  • *If your chicken looks 'done' within 5-10 minutes per side it means your oil was too hot and the inside of your chicken is still raw.
  • *If you find you have dark colored breading and raw insides, pop your chicken into the microwave and finish cooking that way. When you remove it, let it set for about 5 minutes to finish cooking. Reheat your oil and BRIEFLY re-fry your chicken just to get it crisp again.
  • *Drain on paper towels and serve.

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