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My very first fried chicken

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 

So I decided to try my hand at fried chicken!!

 

I flavored the flour with smoked paprika, a bit of cumin, onion, garlic and oregano. 

 

I made two baths: 1) Eggwash & 2) Seasoned flour, and double-breaded.

 

Result: you could tell that was my first time!!!! rolleyes.gif

 

The breading didn't stick to the chicken skin (I am supposed to keep the skin there, right?) and instead formed an omelette-like enveloppe for my chicken. Almost like chicken en papillote - ok now I'm exaggerating. But still, breading detached from chicken skin. 

 

The breading also over-Maillard-reacted in certain spots, and ended up on the dark side of GBD. 

 

So my first guess is that my oil temp wasn't right, which isn't really surprising since I don't have a thermometer and am not good at judging the temp of my oil. 

 

As for the breading detaching... I have to work on that. I guess I'll try without eggwash next time, just a simple bath of seasoned flour? 

post #2 of 27

I'm not an expert at fried chicken but did you dredge the chicken first before you eggwashed it, then bread it again? Because that could be the reason why some of your breading didn't stick. it's good to dry chicken completely with paper towels, then dredge it in the (plain) flour, then eggwash, then the other seasoned flour you made for the chix.

 

 

I'm wondering if the oil wasn't hot enough when you dropped the chicken? and when you realized this, did you crank up the heat causing it to over-brown?

“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relations.”
Oscar Wilde

 

 

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“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relations.”
Oscar Wilde

 

 

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post #3 of 27

I'm not sure if this is thee best recipe for fried chicken, but it gives you a guideline on the basic process of making fried chicken. It's a bit on the old school style. Crisco and scrubbing the kitchen sink. lol I haven't had crisco in my house since the 80's.

 

http://www.thekitchn.com/recipe-fingerlicking-fried-chi-79965

“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relations.”
Oscar Wilde

 

 

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“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relations.”
Oscar Wilde

 

 

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post #4 of 27
Thread Starter 

I dried the chicken thoroughly, then seasoned flour, eggwash, more seasoned flour. 

 

I don't remember what I did with the oil heat, but I did try to adjust the heat as it was cooking. First piece got too dark too quick, so I turned down, added more pieces, they wouldn't go brown at all, raised the heat, etc.... a mess. frown.gif Do you guys do that kind of stuff without thermometer (I'd rather not learn to depend on one)? 

post #5 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by French Fries View Post
 I guess I'll try without eggwash next time, just a simple bath of seasoned flour? 

 

My suggestion for a first timer is to keep it simple. Take your cut chicken pieces and lightly spice them with whatever you like.  Its best if you can do this a few hours ahead of time.  Let your chicken come to temp an hour before you plan on cooking.  Roll in seasoned flour (i personally like rice flour, plus it saves you from finding something else for those glutards) and fry for 8-10 minutes depending on the size.  You wont get an overly crunchy, bready skin, but its an easy delicious start.  I've slowly gone away from overly breaded chicken that uses egg and breading procedures.

 

I would say if you want to move forward from there.  Start with a simple yogurt or buttermilk marinade instead of using just spices like i mentioned above. Take the chicken out the buttermilk and let drain slightly and come to temp.  Roll in seasoned flour and fry.  You'll get more crispy bits and edges because of the sticky nature of the marinade.  And as always, let that meat rest for 5 minutes or so.

 

And yes, proper temperature is crucial.  Buy a thermometer and get that oil as close to 350 - 360 as you can...and make sure you have a big enough pot :)  Good luck on your next batch!

post #6 of 27

It's different with every stove, and also with different foods you're frying. It's worth getting a thermometer just to be on the safe side. I've been cooking for many years and sometimes i still check my oil with a thermometer if i really have no time to screw things up. There's nothing wrong with depending on a therm if you have it there.

 

When I don't use a thermometer, I typically hover my hand a few inches over the hot oil to determine how hot it is, and i'm able to pretty much tell if the oil is right or not. If i'm not certain of the oil temp, i won't drop the batch. I always test it by dropping a small sample piece, in this case, chicken breading to see how it reacts to the oil and go from there. Once you get the right temp, and your frying is going well, jot down where exactly the dial your range is on, and you can adjust it from there in the future when you fry other items.

 

 

 

 

 

http://johndlee.hubpages.com/hub/Deep-Frying-3-Ways-to-Check-the-Oil-Temperature-Without-a-Thermometer

“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relations.”
Oscar Wilde

 

 

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“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relations.”
Oscar Wilde

 

 

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post #7 of 27

yes! like cacio said, big enough pot, you don't want to steam your chicken. Even if that means only frying three pieces at a time.

“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relations.”
Oscar Wilde

 

 

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“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relations.”
Oscar Wilde

 

 

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post #8 of 27

Hm, I don't "deep fry" chicken, I do it in a cast iron skillet/fry pan/chicken fryer. Oil only deep enough to come just over halfway on the chicken.

 

Buttermilk marinade (preferably overnight), drained, dredged in seasoned flour, dipped in seasoned egg wash, then dredged again in seasoned flour, placed on rack and chilled for, um 30 minutes, then into the chicken fryer.
 

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Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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post #9 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by French Fries View Post


So my first guess is that my oil temp wasn't right, which isn't really surprising since I don't have a thermometer and am not good at judging the temp of my oil. 

 

 

 

Go to an asian market and get a package of egg roll wrappers. keep them in the fridge.  When frying pull out a wrapper, cut it into smaller squares and drop one in the oil.  It should bubble and brown nicely.  If a square sits there not doing much at first, oil is too cold.  If it bubbles too  vigourosly and browns unevenly, too hot.  And unlike a thermometer, you can eat the test subjects!

 

But a frying thermometer is nice to use.

 

mjb.

Food nourishes my body.  Cooking nourishes my soul.
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post #10 of 27

for many, many years I didn't own a thermometer, I just heated the oil and stuck the handle of a wooden spoon in, if I got little bubbles straight away, then it was hot enough...

 

as to fried chicken I used America's Test Kitchen recipe for battered fried chicken, perfection!

 

Batter-Fried Chicken

From Cook's Country

August/September 2009

 

Batter-Fried Chicken

Why this recipe works:

As far as technique went for our Batter-Fried Chicken recipe, deep-frying easily beat out shallow-frying. With shallow-frying, the batter always burned on the bottom. To ensure a crisp crust, we replaced the milk in our initial batters with plain old water. It turned out that when wet batter hit the hot frying oil, the moisture in the batter vaporized, leaving behind the solids that adhered to the chicken. With milk, the sugars in the milk solids browned too fast and produced a soft crust.

Using equal parts cornstarch and flour in the batter ensured a crisp crust on the chicken. And baking powder added lift and lightness without doughiness. We flavored our batter with black pepper, paprika, and cayenne for simple but unambiguous flavor.

 

Serves 4 to 6

 

Halve breasts crosswise and separate leg quarters into thighs and drumsticks.

Ingredients:

BRINE

  • 1 quart  cold water
  • 1/4 cup  salt
  • 1/4 cup  sugar
  • 4 pounds  bone-in, skin-on chicken pieces (see note)

BATTER

  • 1 cup  all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup  cornstarch
  • 5 teaspoons  pepper
  • 1 teaspoon  paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon  cayenne pepper
  • 2 teaspoons  baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon  salt
  • 1 3/4 cups  cold water
  • 3 quarts  peanut or vegetable oil

Instructions:

  • 1. MAKE BRINE Whisk water, salt, and sugar in large bowl until sugar and salt dissolve. Add chicken and refrigerate for 30 minutes or up to 1 hour.

  • 2. MAKE BATTER Whisk flour, cornstarch, pepper, paprika, cayenne, baking powder, salt, and water in large bowl until smooth. Refrigerate batter while chicken is brining.

  • 3. FRY CHICKEN Heat oil in large Dutch oven over medium-high heat to 350 degrees. Remove chicken from refrigerator, pour off brine, and pat dry with paper towels. Rewhisk batter. Transfer half of chicken to batter. One piece at a time, remove chicken from batter (allowing excess to drip back into bowl) and transfer to oil. Fry chicken, adjusting burner as necessary to maintain oil temperature between 300 and 325 degrees, until deep golden brown and white meat registers 160 degrees (175 degrees for dark meat), 12 to 15 minutes. Drain chicken on wire rack set inside rimmed baking sheet. Bring oil back to 350 degrees and repeat with remaining chicken. Serve.

Best Batter-Fried Chicken

  • STP_BatterFriedChicken%20-%202%20of%204_276810.jpg;maxheight=114

    1. A crisp crust starts by whisking together a thin batter made from water, flour, baking powder, spices, and cornstarch.

  • STP_BatterFriedChicken%20-%203%20of%204_276811.jpg;maxheight=114

    2. After you've dipped the chicken in the batter, let the excess drip off (back into the bowl) to avoid a doughy coating.

  • STP_BatterFriedChicken%20-%204%20of%204_276812.jpg;maxheight=114

    3. To prevent the chicken pieces from sticking together in the oil, don't crowd the pot. Fry the chicken in two batches.

     

    (sorry, I did do I copy&paste from their website, but it seems that when I try to add links, the site wants everyone to join first!)

post #11 of 27

I'm old school, and agree with Pete's method. That's basically how I was taught by my Texas born & raised mother.

A thermometer is a must have unless you have been frying chicken for 30 years.

post #12 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by PeteMcCracken View Post

Hm, I don't "deep fry" chicken, I do it in a cast iron skillet/fry pan/chicken fryer. Oil only deep enough to come just over halfway on the chicken.

 

Buttermilk marinade (preferably overnight), drained, dredged in seasoned flour, dipped in seasoned egg wash, then dredged again in seasoned flour, placed on rack and chilled for, um 30 minutes, then into the chicken fryer.
 


Why chilled prior to frying?

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Best and I'm a foodie.   I know very little but the little that I know I want to know very well.

 

-T

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post #13 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by French Fries View Post

So I decided to try my hand at fried chicken!!

 

I flavored the flour with smoked paprika, a bit of cumin, onion, garlic and oregano. 

 

I made two baths: 1) Eggwash & 2) Seasoned flour, and double-breaded.

 

Result: you could tell that was my first time!!!! rolleyes.gif

 

The breading didn't stick to the chicken skin (I am supposed to keep the skin there, right?) and instead formed an omelette-like enveloppe for my chicken. Almost like chicken en papillote - ok now I'm exaggerating. But still, breading detached from chicken skin. 

 

The breading also over-Maillard-reacted in certain spots, and ended up on the dark side of GBD. 

 

So my first guess is that my oil temp wasn't right, which isn't really surprising since I don't have a thermometer and am not good at judging the temp of my oil. 

 

As for the breading detaching... I have to work on that. I guess I'll try without eggwash next time, just a simple bath of seasoned flour? 

 

A single breading is a little easier to handle than double dipping.

 

It's alright to use an egg wash, buttermilk, milk, water or even beer -- if you happen to have one handy.  Just don't double-dip -- at least not yet. 

 

Your breading detached probably because you didn't give it a chance to rest.

 

It helps to use a fairly soft flour for the coating.  If you're using AP flour, cut it in half with cake flour; or cut it with some corn starch.  About four parts flour to one part corn starch.  You'll find that you get a better texture if you use a little baking soda in the flour as well. 

 

Your oil was too hot. 

 

The right kind of thermometer is a candy/frying thermometer.  They're cheap.  Quit being charming and helpless, just buy one. 

 

In addition to the won-ton method, you can check for the right temperature by using a piece of bread.  It's how they do it in Europe. The oil should bubble around the bread as soon as the bread is in the pan, the bread should begin to brown immediately, you should be able to fry it without burning it for at least a little while.  If the oil does not bubble, it is too cool.  If it makes big bubbles and burns the bread within fifteen seconds, it is too hot.  

 

Adding the chicken to the pan will decrease the oil temperature.  Be aware that the temp will come back up and might scorch the bottom.  Don't wander off.  Maintain your focus and check the chicken frequently.   

 

If you put the chicken in the pan and the bubbles come out fast and strong, indicating the oil is too hot, it's not too late to lower the flame a little.  You can also raise the flame if the oil is a little too cold, but starting in a too-cold pan will make the chicken greasy. 

 

The right temperature range for frying chicken is 325F to 375F.  You want to watch out for 375F, it will cook the skin and coating before the center of the chicken is fully cooked.  Which brings us to a sort of sneaky and fail-safe method...  Begin by frying in hot oil (around 375F) until the chicken is the right color, then place in a slow oven to finish cooking.  The downside is that finishing the chicken in the oven will steal some of the crispness. 

 

I sometimes use a reverse process.  That is, I start the chicken in a smoker, and after it's absorbed some smoke at around 225F, I remove it from the fryer, dip it in seasoned flour and finish in the fryer. 

 

There's another thread going on concerning "Southern Fried Chicken."  You may want to take a look at that too.

 

BDL

post #14 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by kokopuffs View Post


Why chilled prior to frying?

So the breading/coating as an opportunity to rest and stick to the chicken, actually, for me, this works for any breaded frying, just better results for me.

Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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post #15 of 27

I’m with you Pete, I let my proteins that I’ve breaded rest in the cold box on a rack over a sheet pan prior to shallow frying to GBD

post #16 of 27

Agreed, you need to bread the chicken then let is rest for at least 30 minutes

post #17 of 27

I agree with letting the battered chicken rest before frying.  I don't use egg, I just go straight from the buttermilk soak into the seasoned flour and then onto a rack to dry completely.  

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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post #18 of 27
Thread Starter 

Alright great thanks for all the advice, guys, duly noted. Letting the battered chicken rest seems to be one of the most obvious things I neglected to do.

 

I think I will try again very soon, hopefully with better results. I also want to try the soaking in buttermilk, that sounds great. smile.gif

post #19 of 27

Soaking it in buttermilk keeps the chicken very moist. I use this method when I make chicken tenders and it does make a considerable difference.

“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relations.”
Oscar Wilde

 

 

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“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one's own relations.”
Oscar Wilde

 

 

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post #20 of 27

You could soak it in yogurt too.  Whatever you soak it in don't make it too long because the meat starts to fall apart after a while.  I like to season the buttermilk with lots of spices.

"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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"You are what you eat, so don't be fast, cheap, easy, or fake."

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post #21 of 27
Thread Starter 

Alright! 4 small chicken thighs rubbed with S&P+cumin+smoked paprika+toasted onion powder+garlic powder+oregano are marinating in buttermilk with cholula.

 

Now one thing I completely forgot... is to buy a frying thermometer! eek.gif Not trying to be charming, I swear! I was going to buy one, I just completely forgot. I'll have to try the breadcrumb test. 

post #22 of 27

Bread cube, not crumb.  You want a "crouton" the size of a commercial salad crouton, or maybe a little bigger. 

 

Good luck,

BDL

post #23 of 27

wooden spoon handle in the oil; if it gives off little bubbles, you're good to go!

post #24 of 27
Thread Starter 

Ok, I did the wooden chopstick trick, seemed to work. The chicken was delicious! This time I fried it for less time (about 10mn) and finished in a 375F oven. It was easier to control the exact color I wanted that way. 

 

The breading was much crispier than last time and stuck better to the chicken pieces. Resting turned the flour coat into a sort of batter (the flour was absorbed by the buttermilk) and that seemed to help. 

 

Still I didn't have any corn starch, so that's the next thing for me to try!! 

 

Really excited about it though, I now know how to make fried chicken! And it's pretty simple! I'll have to invite some friends for a real test now. smile.gif

post #25 of 27

Picture, FF, PICTURES!!!

post #26 of 27
Thread Starter 

You know, I've been meaning to clean up my phone... but until I do, it keeps saying it's too full and I can't take any pictures... frown.gif

post #27 of 27

When I fry Chicken i brine it, then marinade it in seasoned butter milk. I've grown past the idea of frying the chicken from the start and I bake my chicken prior, then save all the juices and mix it with my egg wash. get some crushed cornflakes and mix it with the flour. and I do flour egg flour. I flash fry them for about 3 minutes and they're a nice golden color with extremely juicy and soft meat.

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