For the longest time, I've yearned to learn how to make fried chicken. My friend Linda's recipe turns out finger-lickin' fried chicken, crispy on the outside and moist on the inside, one skillet after another.
Caught the Sunday smell of someone fryin' chicken ...”
In the food world of my childhood, a woman’s no cook, not a real cook anyway, until she masters a tender flaky pie crust, hot-from-the-oven homemade bread and picnic-worthy fried chicken. So here I am, a woman of a certain age, and only now tackling that fried chicken.
No question why it’s taken this long: sheer intimidation. There was no matching my grandmother’s fried chicken, even following her recipe step by careful step. My home ec-teacher mother tried and failed. If she failed, well, there was no way I could succeed.
But then this summer my friend Linda shared her favorite fried chicken recipe, one she's perfected over many years. The very first night I poured the oil into the inky black cast-iron skillet, I felt like a fried-chicken rock star, like I knew what I was doing, like I was guaranteed success.
That first batch of fried chicken? Dark and oh so crispy. Succulent, even.
There was no looking back. Gramma Kellogg, your legacy continues! I know how to cook great fried chicken!
ROCK-STAR FRIED CHICKEN RECIPE
For detailed tips about frying chicken, see How to Make Great Fried Chicken
Time to table: 1-1/2 hours
- Chicken legs and/or chicken thighs, skins on
- Spicy brown mustard
- 1/2 cup flour
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
(enough for about 5 legs and 5 thighs)
- 1 cup peanut oil per skillet
Rinse chicken pieces under running water and pat dry with paper towels. With your hands, lightly coat the pieces with mustard. Arrange in a single layer on a plate and refrigerate for about 30 minutes.
Turn on the stove’s vent fan. In a large cast iron skillet with a lid (or two smaller skillets), heat the oil on medium high until hot. While the oil heats, mix the flour, salt and pepper in a gallon-size freezer bag. Add the chicken and toss until coated.
Without crowding, use tongs to arrange the chicken pieces in the skillet, top-side down for thighs and any breasts. Without moving the pieces, cook for 10 minutes. Turn the pieces over and cook for 5 minutes. Reduce heat to medium to medium-low, cover and cook for 20 minutes. Remove cover, turn pieces over again, increase heat to medium high and cook for 5 minutes. Arrange on platter lined with paper towels.
Serve hot or keep warm in a 200F oven or refrigerate and serve cold.
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