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Old 09-06-2008, 09:30 PM   #21
Senior Cook
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 375
Thanks for all the suggestions guys! For me, this is less about the food, and more about the technique. If I switch to pan frying, even if it yields a better product, then I'm admitting failure at deep frying. I don't want to circumvent the problem, I want to solve it.

I refuse to accept that deep frying cannot yield good fried chicken. That's impossible.

the tough sking your getting is becuase its not being broken down.

Buttermilk is the key, the enzymes help break down the fibers to give you taht awesomeness your looking for.

If you dont have butter milk you can marinate it in yogurt.

I maranate all my chicken in yogurt, oil and whatever....
Ok, so you're saying that I should be marinating in buttermilk or yogurt? Say I marinate for 24 hours, and then finish with standard breading procedure (flour, egg / milk wash, bread crumbs), will that do the trick?

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Old 09-10-2008, 09:10 AM   #22
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Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: USA, Oklahoma
Posts: 3,463
IMHO, 24 hours in buttermilk and/or yogurt is probably to long. The natural enzymes and bacteria in those products will break the connective tissue down to far, and yield "mushy" chicken.

Here's my recipe:

Fried Chicken
Yields: 12 pieces

I usually use leg and thigh quarters, cut apart, as they’re dirt cheap and the kids love them. Also, I typically use just water in the marinade, and the brand-name seasonings listed. The "original" recipe, from where I work, calls for Cain's Meat Seasoning and Cain's Seasoned Salt, but unless you live in OK, good luck finding them.
I used to always think that this was just a marinade, but I’ve recently realized that this is more of a brine, and the salt helps to transport the flavors and extra moisture into the flesh of the chicken. Keep in mind that if you use buttermilk, or marinate for 6 hours or longer, you will want to cut down on the amounts of seasoning used with the flour, as the resulting chicken will be to salty.

12 pieces of chicken
For the marinade:
3 eggs
3 c cold water
-or- buttermilk
-or- milk
1 T McCormick Broiled Steak Seasoning
-or- 1 T meat seasoning
1 T Lawry’s Seasoned Salt
-or- 1 T seasoned salt
For the seasoned flour:
1 T McCormick Broiled Steak Seasoning
-or- 1 T meat seasoning
1 T Lawry’s Seasoned Salt
-or- 1 T seasoned salt
3 c flour

Combine the marinade ingredients. Place the marinade and chicken pieces in a mixing bowl or gallon ziplock baggie. Stir the chicken around to coat it. Marinate for 3 - 4 hours or overnight, turning once or twice.
Heat a deep-fryer to 350F, or heat an inch of oil in a large cast iron skillet. Sift together the seasonings and the flour. Remove the chicken from the marinade, and dredge through to the flour. This may be easier if you do the “shake and bake” style, by placing the flour into a bag and dropping a couple pieces of chicken in and shaking it. You may want to dip the chicken pieces back into the marinade and repeat the breading, for a thicker breading. Deep-fry the chicken pieces until done, about 15 - 20 minutes, or until a probe thermometer reads 170F in the thickest part of the meat but not touching the bone. When done, remove to a wire rack over a sheet pan to drain.

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