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Old 04-21-2015, 11:26 PM   #1
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Looking to learn how to pan fry chicken

I'm looking to learn how to make pan fried chicken rather than using my Presto fryer which IMO doesn't stay up to temp and is too much a hassle to clean up and store. I can clean a frying pan in less than 2 min. My Presto Fryer takes 10+ minutes to clean thoroughly. Prviously, I've only fried up chicken drumettes in my Presto fryer using the Dixie Fry dry mix. Bigger pieces don't seem to fry up that well tho.

I'm looking to mix up some frying chicken batter mix and storing it. I have the Panko bread crumbs and all of the most commonly used spices for a fried chicken mix. I'll buy the buttermilk for the soak and find a way to freeze up portions for when I don't want to have to run to the store for buttermilk. I have some "Dixie Fry" brand frying mix some here may have heard of that I could add some corn meal or Panko crumbs to for a better crunch. I haven't attempted using Dixie Fry.

Also, about the procedure, I heard that once coated you should let the chicken sit on a cookie sheet covered to allow the coating to get nice and thick. They said that was key. Also some have said to start with high heat (360-375F) and then once browned, turn down the heat and continue cooking for 20 minutes or so, then bring up the heat again to get the final crunch. That makes some sense in that if I were to leave it at high frying temp, it might burn the outside and not get the inside cooked throughly (?).

I suppose I'm asking for both dry mix help and frying help, or at least how you fry up crispy chicken.

If anyone cares to relate their favorite flour + spices dry mix for fried chicken that I could store in an airtight flour container, that would be super. There are literally dozens of them on the net, but I can't choose which one. Frying tips would be appreciated too, or at least, how you fry up crispy chicken. I know it will take practice. Thanks.

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Old 04-22-2015, 02:10 AM   #2
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My first Husband taught me how to fry chicken. Today I used Stove Top Stuffing Mix because I looked and found I had no seasoned bread crumbs. I put the stuffing mix in my small FP and brought it down to a large crumb. My only seasoning was sea salt and a small amount of garlic powder. As my husband told me, too many spices and they will burn before the chicken is done. He also taught me to add a small amount of grated cheese. I always use Parm or Romano.

I like the stuffing mix for bread crumb coating. It is already seasoned and you can even get it flavored for fowl. I dip the piece of chicken in well beaten eggs mixed with a touch of half and half. Coat the chicken with the egg well and then into the crumb mixture. If I am in the mood for a thick crust I will double dip it. Egg then crumb mix. And the advice you got about letting the pieces sit on the side will definitely help the coating to stick to the meat. For a family I usually coated the chicken in the afternoon and then let it sit until I started to cook supper. More than an hour. But thirty minutes should be fine.

I put about 1-2 inches on oil into the frying pan. I heat it up to high and then reduce to medium. Then I place the chicken pieces in. Do not crowd the pan. After about 4-5 minutes I check to see how it is browning. If it is browning too fast I lower the heat to a medium low. I let that side fry for a full 10 minutes. I then turn it over and bring the heat back up to medium. After five minutes I again check how it is browning. And repeat as above. I want each side to be in the pan cooking for no less than a total of 20 minutes. Ten minutes on each side. I then know that there will be no blood near the bones. To be sure, I use a thermometer. 155-160 internal temp is what I am going for.

You can keep the cooked pieces in a warm oven until all of them are done. The crust is crispy and stays that way due to the cheese. As it is cooking it softens throughout the cooking process, and then cools down and hardens a bit upon cooling. Thus keeping it crispy. It doesn't have to be a large amount. Just a tablespoon or a bit more. Depends on how many pieces you are making. You want to use a cheese that has a hearty flavor. Because even though you are adding only a small amount compared to the crumbs, it still will add flavor to the whole coating.

Make sure your chicken is dry. The egg coating will stick to the chicken better and be there for the crumb covering. Also keep your eye on the oil. If it get too dirty after frying a lot of pieces, you may have to dump it and put in fresh. I always put it through a coffee filter and save for use again later. Between batches, if there are a lot of small pieces of batter in the oil, remove them. If they sit in the oil while you are doing the pieces, they will burn and turn your oil dirty a lot quicker.

If there is any egg mixture and the crumb coating leftover, I mix them together and make hush puppies with it. Those are for the cook.

Any questions and I will gladly answer them. I have been doing my chicken this way for more than fifty years. One year when money was really tight for us, I told the kids I cut up the turkey and fried it the same way they like the chicken. They thought it tasted just as good as the chicken. It was a Happy Thanksgiving for everyone. Even the cut up chicken. Just don't tell my kids what I did.
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Old 04-22-2015, 02:55 AM   #3
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Thanks Addie, I'm still taking in what you posted. About how much oil to use. I think I have it right so far as to fill up the frying pan so that it covers about half the chicken in oil (rather than exact quantity). When I first put the chicken in at 350F, it sure gets frying. So much so that I use a splatter screen. Yet, in some videos I've seen it shows the chicken slowly oil boiling, not splatter boiling. I need to get that part down and will look back over your post! I make sure my chicken is room temp, btw.

I'm looking not to over fry the outside and yet get the inside cooked. I guess that's how the Colonel decided an oil pressure cooker would do the trick (not over fry the outside, yet cook the inside).
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Old 04-22-2015, 03:18 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Caslon View Post
Thanks Addie, I'm still taking in what you posted. About how much oil to use. I think I have it right so far as to fill up the frying pan so that it covers about half the chicken in oil (rather than exact quantity). When I first put the chicken in at 350F, it sure gets frying. So much so that I use a splatter screen. Yet, in some videos I've seen it shows the chicken slowly oil boiling, not splatter boiling. I need to get that part down and will look back over your post! I make sure my chicken is room temp, btw.

I'm looking not to over fry the outside and yet get the inside cooked. I guess that's how the Colonel decided an oil pressure cooker would do the trick (not over fry the outside, yet cook the inside).
Half way up the pieces is right. Then when you flip it, it is meeting up with the other side. You want the oil hot when you first put in the chicken, then immediately turn it down. The high heat seals the crust so the chicken isn't oily or greasy. Room temp is perfect. If you leave the heat on high, the outside will cook before the inside has even begun to cook.
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Old 04-22-2015, 04:58 AM   #5
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We actually prefer "Golden Dip" coatings over homemade. We both like the original and extra crispy. I really like the spicy. You can get dried buttermilk, keep it in the pantry and use when needed. Just add water.
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Old 04-22-2015, 05:36 AM   #6
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Regarding the dried buttermilk, it has to be refrigerated after opening.
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Old 04-22-2015, 07:47 AM   #7
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I haven't made fried chicken in years because of the mess, but here's the seasoning mix I used:

1 cup flour
1 teaspoon each of salt, dried thyme and dried sage, or 2 teaspoons poultry seasoning
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

This recipe provides for crispy skin rather than a crispy bread and egg coating, which I prefer. I used extra seasoned flour to make gravy from some of the cooking oil and served it over rice.

Also, high heat doesn't seal the crust; it causes moisture in the chicken to steam and the steam pushes the oil away from the meat. So it's important to keep the temperature as steady as possible or the oil will penetrate the skin and make the chicken greasy.
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Old 04-22-2015, 08:32 AM   #8
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I too do not fry chicken very often. When I do, I use a seasoned flour mix similar to GG's, no sage, add garlic powder and if it's just for me, a little cayenne. Dry the chicken pieces, roll in flour, shake excess, dip in buttermilk (with a few healthy shakes Tabasco in it). Roll or shake in flour again. Let rest on a cooling rack 15-20 minutes. I don't use eggs in the liquid, I think the coating gets too heavy for my taste preference.

I use peanut oil for frying. Fry both sides chicken until browned on both sides in 350-360 hot oil. Partially cover with an ill fitting pan cover and lower the heat Just a little bit. Cook about 15-20 minutes. Remove cover and cook until the chicken gets re-crisped up.

I am intrigued by you guys coating mixes. I wrote them both down. I see one is avail at Wally World. I have successfully used pancake mix (Krusteeze brand) up at the lake. Addie, Where were you when I needed your idea the most. Saved about a third of a pkg stuffing mix that kept getting shuffled around in the cupboard until the pkg broke and then it got tossed. I would think it was probably petrified by then. I think the Stuffing flavor would be terrific.

I am lucky. I have an old cast iron chicken fry pan. Not as large around as other CI skillets. Has higher sides. It's useful as you have to cook chicken in batches, and is better if making only a few pieces. Uses less oil. Before that I used an electric skillet, which was probably fine since we had a full size family then. Any heavy bottom skillet will work.
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Old 04-22-2015, 08:40 AM   #9
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The Golden Dipt Extra-Crispy fries up a lot like KFC Extra-Crispy. It's been hard to find last few years here. When it is in the grocery, we usually buy just about every box. It can also be made spicy by adding cayenne and whatever else you'd like.

It's been a while since I've fried chicken for us because of the mess just like GG and because we couldn't find the GD-EC, which is my favorite. We've been buying a whole chicken fried at KFC or the fried chicken from Publix (grocery store in our part of the country) since both are pretty good and you always want fried chicken leftovers to eat cold from the fridge the next day. By the time you add up cost of the chicken, oil, coating mix, time, especially time cleaning up the mess, it's pretty much a wash buying from either place and, if Publix has the chicken on sale, you come out even better IMHO.
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Old 04-22-2015, 09:25 AM   #10
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Others have offered looks of good advice.
The only thing I'd add is to make sure the chicken is really patted dry before you start and, here's a tip: Pat the chicken dry then dredge the chicken pieces in the flour THEN let the chicken absorb the flour into/onto the skin until the flour is sort of gummy looking. This can take a few minutes. Be patient. LOL It's going to be the glue that holds the other coatings/batter to stick to the chicken pieces. It's surprising how much moisture the flour will absorb from the skin. Doing this will insure the regular flour>egg>Panka crumbs (or whatever crumbs) will stick to the chicken.
I use this method anytime I'm cooking something 'breaded' like veal cutlets. Even lowly hamburgers benefit from a dredge in flour then allowing the flour to absorb the exterior moisture before frying.
Don't overheat the oil.
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