Maybe I’ve been listening to too much folk music, maybe its because my flatmate just left to eat her way around the Bible Belt of the U.S of A. I don’t know what it is but lately I have been craving fried chicken an unusual amount for someone who has not only never made fried chicken but also doesn’t really eat much fried chicken. So last night while feeling particularly beaten down by living in the city I threw on ‘O, Brother Where Art Though’ and cranked out the chicken drums I had been reserving for such an occasion, only to find that they needed to be soaked overnight. Pretty disappointing but I wanted to do this thing right so boiled up some salted water and waited my patience.
Tonight I rushed home excitedly, threw open every door and window in the place and started frying up 400g of lard on the skillet. And because when I do things right I do them right I then went ahead and threw the briny chicken that had been soaking for 24 hours into a paper bag with flour and seasoning and gave it a good scare. While the chicken cooked I realised maybe it would be ‘healthy’ to accompany it with something and whipped up some spicy mashed potatoes (recipe featured a few weeks ago) and cooked up a few carrots (so HEALTHY!). I was trying not to get my hopes up but something told me this chicken was going to be special. And not just because it was black before it even went near the skillet (I ran out of sea salt so used black lava sea salt for the brine).
Oh boy! The end result was beyond special. I never knew chicken could be so crispy, tasty and glorious. I have never been huge on chicken, especially on eating it from the bone but I swear I stripped those drumsticks so thoroughly you would be hard pressed to find any meat left on there. And lucky there was no-one around to share/compete with because they would have lost a hand had they tried to get a hold of one of those precious pieces of chicken. I cannot even describe how tasty this chicken was, so I guess you’ll just have to go off and make it for yourself so you can find out
recipe adapted from http://homesicktexan.blogspot.com.au/2007/07/anniversary-served-with-fried-chicken.html
*4 cups water
*1/4 cup salt
*4 chicken drums
*400g lard (you can also use oil, and you can use less, as long as it covers the skillet well, rising up about an inch on the sides)
*1/2 cup flour with salt and pepper to taste
*bring water to boil and add salt, stir till dissolved, let cool then add chicken pieces and soak for at least 8 hours
*put flour mixture and chicken into a paper bag and shake it like you mean it
*heat lard in a skillet for about 5 mins on high, until you can put a ball of flour in and it floats to the top and starts to fry
*turn down heat to medium and add chicken pieces skin side down, fry pieces for about 10-12 minutes until golden brown
*turn over and fry other side until golden brown
*allow chicken to rest on some paper towels or drain on a rack for 10 minutes before serving
A few notes on this recipe:
– Always use tongs, that lard spits like nothing else
– Keep in mind that this recipe is only enough for one person. I halved everything from the original recipe.
– I served this with a whole lot of Coriander and it was an amazing combination. But what else do you expect from Coriander.
– I also added the last dregs of some Louisianan Cajun spice from a local shop Gewurzhaus to my flour mixture. It probably wasn’t enough to truly make a diiference and you’d be shocked how flavoursome this chicken is as a result of the brine but I’d say it is worth looking into making up a bit of a spice mix. Go on, give KFC a run for their money.
I hope you enjoyed today’s installment, I’m off to rest my arteries.