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in which i fry chicken...from scratch


I know, the earth just shook a little right? For someone who has the cooking capacity of the closest take-out menu, the thought of frying chicken from scratch was a little daunting.  However, Scott got me an awesome book for Christmas, which included a recipe for said dish from one of my favorite chefs and restaurateur's, Ashley Christensen. (Seriously if you are in or have occasion to visit the Raleigh/Durham area, run - do not walk - to Poole's, Beasley's, and/or Chuck's).

All of this is to say, I would not have ventured down this rabbit hole of cooking if not for the promise of amazing chicken.  And to be honest, the recipe was pretty straight forward and easy.  Although it calls for brining from 10 -12 hours (I only did it for 8), it was worth every minute.  Let's just say that a non-meat-eating-toddler-in-a-certain-household not only asked for it, but ate seconds. (Boom, mama win!) So without further ado, check it, double deck it and enjoy.

Ashley Christensen’s Fried Chicken
serves 2 to 4

1 whole chicken, cut into pieces (if a whole chicken isn't your thing, we used breasts and it worked perfectly.  Also, the recommendation is to purchase good quality chicken to allow for the flavor to really complement the ingredients)
8 cups cold water
1 cup granulated sugar
1½ cup kosher salt, plus 1 tsp.
1 gallon ice cubes
Canola oil (for frying)
4 cups whole buttermilk
4 cups all-purpose flour

To brine the chicken, bring the water to a boil, add in the sugar and 1½ cup salt, stir until dissolved, and remove from the heat. Combine the brine and ice in a large food-safe container. Place the chicken in the brine, cover, and refrigerate for at least 10 hours and no longer than 12 hours. (I only did it for 8)

When ready to fry the chicken, fill a large cast-iron skillet with enough canola oil to come halfway up the sides, and heat to 325°F. Meanwhile, fill a paper grocery bag with the flour and remaining 1 tsp. salt, fold closed, and shake to combine. Fill a large bowl with the buttermilk.

Remove the chicken pieces from the brine, and pat them dry. One by one, dip the chicken pieces in the buttermilk, lift to briefly drain the excess, then place in the grocery bag with the flour mixture. Fold the bag closed, and shake to thoroughly coat the chicken with the flour mixture, about 30 seconds.

Shake the excess flour from the chicken pieces, and fry in the skillet, turning once, until done (155°F on the interior for white meat, 165°F on the interior for dark meat), adjusting the heat of the oil as necessary to maintain 325°F.

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  1. Um. Yum! And kudos on your bambino asking for seconds! I know that's a good feeling.

  2. So many people in my family would love this.

    Tracy @ Sunny Days and Starry Nights


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