I thought I'd get a little use of of all those years in culinary school. However, today's recipe is actually one I created as a teen. I've updated it over the years to what it is now. I'm not usually one to brag, but this chicken is better than my grandma's. You'd never know it came from a gir straight outta the great lakes. It's juicy, crispy, and has just the right amount of seasoning. It also has some heat. And bonus...on the scale of 1-10 for the level of difficulty it's seriously maybe a two. I'll post a pic of the finish product next time I make it. We already at it. My bad. 😁
So without further ado...
Not So Southern Fried Chicken
1 whole fryer (cut up)
2 cups (more or less) flour
1/2-1 tsp black pepper (freshly ground)
1 tsp seasoning salt (I prefer Lawrey's)
1/2-1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp (or much more) crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp cumin
1 tsp kosher salt
6-8 sprigs fresh thyme
2 club cloves garlic (if you feel like it)
Oil for frying (I prefer Crisco) (enough to submerge the chicken pieces entirely)
Heat oil to 350 degrees. Add thyme (and whole cloves of garlic if you have it) to the oil and fry for about 30 seconds. Remove thyme and garlic and discard. This just flavors to our oil. Mix flour, pepper, garlic powder, paprika, pepper flakes, cinnamon, cumin, and 1/2 tsp salt. Set aside. I sometimes soak the chicken in cold water in the fridge for a few hours, but this isn't necessary. Rinse the chicken and pat dry. Generously salt and pepper both sides of the chicken.
I place my flour mixture in a paper sack. Toss chicken pieces one or two at a time until each piece is coated. Place on wax paper and let sit for at least 15-30 minutes (until the flour soaks in a bit and looks gummy. Toss the chicken in the flour again. This gives the chicken a good coating.
Fry the chicken in the oil making sure not to crowd the pan. Lower the heat to med-high and cover the chicken. Continue to let the chicken cook (times will vary according to the size of chicken pieces) for approximately 10 minutes turning once. At this point the chicken should be golden brown and fully cooked. If not browned, raise heat and fry for a few more minutes on both sides.
Place cooked chicken on a wire rack over a cookie sheet or a paper towel lined cookie sheet. Place in an oven preheated to 200 degrees. Keep warm until all of the chicken is ready to serve. Enjoy.
3 Tbsp Cooking oil
3 Tbsp flour mixture from above
Salt and peppet taste
Pour off all of the oil from the pan except 3 Tbsp. Keep all of the brown bits in the oil. This adds a lot of flavor. The oil should still be hot. Take about 3 Tbsp of the flour mixture and whisk it into the oil to make a roux. Whisk in approximately 2-3 cups of milk. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook on low to medium heat until the flour is completely cooked and our gravy has thickened. If it becomes too thick add eithera bit more milk or chicken stock (no water). Serve over chicken, biscuits, and/ or mashed potatoes. Complete disclosure: I have eaten this gravy by itself with a spoon.