It is hard for me to fry chicken without thinking about the years I drove Limos. Although the two have nothing to do with each other they are forever intertwined. Living in Florida and working with retires. I learned a few things about the "Good Ol Days" bare foot walking to school, cat head biscuits with molasses poured in them , kids only getting vegetables for dinner..... They informed me that only on Sundays was chicken cooked. The men and preacher were served first with the kids getting what was left. These two lived so far down in the country that you could see the male truck a mile away! The cloud of dust was the signal for them that the mail was soon to be delivered. This was back when folks still wrote letters to each other and mail brought exciting news. This day was different than most. When the mail truck passed, they threw one of momma’s fattest hens in front of the truck, and yelled "FRIED CHICKEN! Frying chicken is something we do only a few times a year ,but I always think of this story when I do.
Southern Fried Chicken
8 pieces/ or boneless breast
- 2 cups low fat buttermilk
- 2 tablespoons kosher salt
2 tablespoons paprika
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon season salt
- Flour, for dredging
- Vegetable shortening, for frying
Place chicken pieces into a plastic container and cover with buttermilk over and refrigerate for 12 to 24 hours.
Melt enough shortening (over low heat) to come just 1/8-inch up the side of a 12-inch cast iron skillet or heavy fry pan. Once shortening liquefies raise heat to 325 degrees F.The key to good juicy fried chicken is to get a good scald on it. This will make it crispy on the outside a juicy on the inside. Test the grease by putting a drop of water in it, if it sputters its ready. Never put in when grease is not hot enough, chicken will absorb the grease, and be soggy.
Drain chicken in a colander. Combine spices and liberally season chicken. Dredge chicken in flour and shake off excess.
Place chicken skin side down into the pan. Put thighs in the center, and breast and legs around the edge of the pan. The oil should come half way up the pan. Cook chicken until golden brown on each side, approximately 10 to 12 minutes per side. Enjoy!