Thursday, July 28, 2011

A Fry By Night Scheme

If you follow Joanne's tweets you'll know that frying can be a very dangerous ordeal. Perhaps that's why we never made our own fried chicken at home. That and the fact that fried foods tend to be a little unhealthy. Frying was absolutely reserved for latkes at Chanukkah.

Which is not to say we never had fried chicken. But when we did, it was the kind that came in a bucket and made with 11 magical herbs and spices.

I haven't lived at home in (mumble mumble mumble) years and in that time period I've experimented with many different kinds of fried chicken. Because all fried chicken is not created equal. For instance the fried chicken most of us are familiar with is the southern fried chicken - covered in gravy and served with biscuits. And those biscuits and gravy certainly make a wonderful day after breakfast.

But I also adore a beer battered fried chicken. Think fish and chips, but with chicken instead of yucky fish. This might be Thatboy's favorite type of fried chicken too. And probably the most unhealthy because this is a nice thick batter.

If you're not in the south, a lot of us Yankees add some breadcrumb into the flour coating for a nice crispy crust.

Since it's summer, it's the perfect time to experiment with different kinds of fried chicken. Picnic season, lunches on the beach, and no oven heating up your house. So what do you think, what's YOUR favorite type of fried chicken?

Southern Fried Chicken
4 pieces chicken (you can pick your favorite. I like breast, Thatboy likes drumsticks)
a little over 1/4 cup flour
salt and pepper
canola oil

  1. Rinse the chicken and dry thoroughly. You want the chicken as dry as possible. Put them in a pie pan and cover with milk. Refrigerate for an hour.
  2. Mix the flour, salt, and pepper in a brown paper bag. Add the chicken and shake shake shake senora.
  3. Pour a 1/2 inch of oil into a skillet (cast iron would be best) and heat to 375.
  4. If you're cooking anything other than breasts, put them in first and put in the breasts 5 minutes after (dark meat takes longer to cook).
  5. Fry 25 minutes, turning often.
  6. Drain on paper towels before serving.

Beer Battered Chicken
1/2 cup flour
1 egg white
1/2 Tbsp melted butter
1/4 cup beer
4 pieces chicken (see above recipe)
canola oil
  1. Combine flour, egg white, butter, salt and beer in a blender until smooth. Let batter stand for 4 hours to get nice and thick.
  2. Rinse and dry chicken pieces getting them as dry as possible.
  3. Pour 3 inches of oil into a skillet (cast iron would be best) and heat to 365.
  4. Dip the chicken in the batter and submerge in the oil.
  5. Fry 15 minutes.
  6. Drain on paper towels before serving.

Crumb Coated Chicken
1/4 cup flour
salt and pepper
1 cup breadcrumbs
1 egg white
4 pieces of chicken (pick your favorite parts)
canola oil
  1. Mix flour with salt and pepper and place on a shallow dish. Place bread crumbs on another shallow dish. Place the egg white in a shallow bowl with a tablespoon of water.
  2. Rinse and dry the chicken pieces, getting them as dry as possible. Roll the chicken in the flour, then egg, then breadcrumbs.
  3. Pour a 1/2 inch of oil into a skillet (cast iron would be best) and heat to 365.
  4. Fry chicken for 20 minutes, turning often.
  5. Drain on paper towels before serving.


  1. Did you really make all those? So impressed and hungry. I think my favorite would be the kinda that leaves you biscuits and gravy for breakfast.

  2. I just made some oven fried chicken for an upcoming event and it is the best I have tasted from my own kitchen so far with a few tweaks. I do not own a deep fat fryer, and maybe that is for the best.

  3. Haha I'm glad I could be fodder for your post :P My burns are doing better, thanks for asking.

  4. I would have never guessed you are such a fried chicken connoisseur.


  5. I love your post and blog so much!!!.))

    I need your help. I spend another survey but this time with another question.
    "Where do you prefer to shop? What is your favorite shopping center?"

  6. Whoa. Frying things aren't easy! I hate frying. Such a hassle. But if I were to eat fried chicken (and I'm biased) I would make Korean fried chicken!!

    Bah, now I crave fried chicken! Do you have any left?

  7. I love fried chicken at picnics, but rarely make it to take myself (I'm way more likely to make it in the wintertime). My favorite though? Buttermilk Fried Chicken. Delicious, juicy and so naughty.

  8. I never fry chicken but that's not to say I don't love it. I love seeing the southern version - almost overkill with gravy and biscuits but you know - if you're going to go the way of fried chicken - you might as well dive in. When I do fry something - it's in a skillet - so it's living on the edge. My family would happily feast on any of those versions. And husband-person loves the drummies!

  9. Would you believe I have never made fried chicken??? I think I'm afraid that if I make it once I will make it daily. :)

  10. I have tried many times to master the art of frying chicken. I can't seem to do it. The recipe that always keeps me trying is Thomas Keller's recipe.

    I am not a "frying" person myself but, there those times when you crave comfort food-much like the variety of fried chicken dishes you have displayed for your readers to drool over (smile).

    Awesome post.


  11. Fried chicken are always irresistible to me, this looks so tempting

  12. Woww.. so much fried chicken :D Looks yum :D

  13. yup....gotta admit. I have never made fried chicken. Your beer battered chicken look tremendous! I need to get off my butt and make some!

  14. I love southern fried, but I throw in an extra healthy portion of paprika into the flour and actually like a little corn meal in there, too, for extra crunch.
    Usually I am too impatient to wait for the second batch to cook up once the first is done and end up burning some of the second (or third) batch while eating the first. You would think I'd learn...