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lets talk fried chicken !!

cal1956

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i know we all love our BBQ chicken but sometimes we just gotta have a piece of good fried chicken, and a few weeks ago i ran across what has turned out to be the best fried chicken recipe i have ever tried , and trust me i have tried a LOT of fried chicken recipes in the past 40 years , but this one is a bit different than others that i have tried , at 1st i was a bit skeptical but i have cooked this chicken several times now and always gotten very good results, the 1st thing is to use chicken thats completely thawed, and cut up, then in a large bowel completely cover the chicken in water next add 2 -2 1/2tablespoons of salt to the water, then add 2 table spoons of Turmeric powder , add teaspoon of Celery salt , a teaspoon of Dill powder and finally add 2 tablespoons of powdered red pepper . right now i know what your thinking ,its going to be waaay to salty !! ( but it won't Trust me ) cover it and set it in the fridge overnight . it MUST set in the mixture at least 10-12 hours the flour mixture is simple , just 1 1/2 cups of general purpose flour with a teaspoon of salt, a tablespoon of red pepper and a tablespoon of Paprika ( Paprika is optional , ) preheat oil to 340 degrees , remove the chicken from the brine mixture and while its still dripping coat it with the flour mixture. drop it into the deep fryer for 17-18 minutes , when you take it out of the fryer DO NOT put it on paper towels !!! instead put it on a wire rack to dry and drain for 4-5 minutes before eating
this is by far the best fried chicken recipe i have found ,
but with that said the original recipe calls for 2 things i have as yet to use
(1) Annatto oil and (2) beef tallow , i have found both on Amazon but have been reluctant to buy them having never heard of anyone using them,
the original recipe calls for adding 2 tablespoons of Annatto oil to the brine mixture and to fry the chicken in a 50/50 mix of beef tallow and vegetable oil.
the chicken is great without them so i'm not sure if i will ever try them or not
 

SmokinAl

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It sounds good, but how about a few photo’s of the chicken.
Al
 

browneyesvictim

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Any fried chicken is a guilty pleasure any time in my book! Who doesn't love it. That recipe looks like a winner! Would love to see pictures.
I can see the benefits of using beef tallow. Heck even Crisco would be better than most other oils. But Peanut oil is by far my reigning favorite.
The annatto oil I'm not sure how much flavor will come through other than to add color.
 

cal1956

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you know i never even thought about taking pictures of fried chicken before , but next time i will do it .
what makes this different than all the other recipes i have tried is : the chicken skin and crust are almost as one.... meaning crispy, crunchy and full of flavorful , i think the brine has something to do with doing that, ( the chicken so far) has been tender, and moist , as far as the Annetto oil is concerned , it just seems like oil would "float " on top of the brine and not do much , i could be wrong though !!
i have never used "beef tallow" before so i'm in the dark concerning that also
maybe someone that has been to cooking school can explain how this recipe works so well,
i love the fact that time after time i get crispy, crunchy chicken with no "soggy skin"
 
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thirdeye

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Okay, let's talk chicken....

The long marinade time you mentioned is similar to a favorite fried chicken recipe called Bon Ton Chicken. It has a 24 hour marinade time, and different spices than yours. And once it's dredged, it needs to sit for a while to get sort of sticky. This is a Kentucky based recipe from the 50's and you can read the interesting history of this recipe HERE. (I tend to cut back on the salt).

Ingredients

For marinade

1 qt water
2 tablespoons salt
2 teaspoons cayenne
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 1/2 teaspoons white pepper
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
4 chicken breast halves, 4 thighs, and 4 drumsticks (all with skin and bones; 4 to 4 1/2 lb total)

For frying
About 12 cups vegetable oil

For dredging
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon cayenne
1 teaspoon white pepper

Preparation

Marinate chicken:
Whisk together all marinade ingredients in a large bowl.
Add chicken, making sure it is covered with marinade. Chill, covered, stirring twice, about 24 hours.

Dredge and fry chicken: Heat 2 inches oil in a wide 8- to 9 1/2-quart pot over moderately high heat until a deep-fat thermometer registers 365 to 375°F. (Our pot was 12 inches wide and 5 inches deep; if you don’t have that wide a pot, you can fry the chicken in two batches.)

Meanwhile, whisk together all dredging ingredients in a large bowl. Drain chicken, discarding marinade. Dredge each piece of chicken in seasoned flour and put on a large baking sheet. Let stand about 10 minutes.

Fry chicken, turning a few times, 20 to 25 minutes, or until golden brown, then drain on a rack.
 

cal1956

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your right they are similar !! , over the years i must have tried 100s of different recipes for fried chicken and this one is the 1st one i have used a salt brine mixture ,and its the1st one that i have used Turmeric in , i suspect the "brine" does something to the skin that helps get the nice crispy skin and maybe helps with the crust , i only coat the chicken once and shake off any excess flour and still get a nice crust that sticks to the chicken very well
the Turmeric adds a nice flavor as well as color ,i can see how both recipes would produce similar results , just with a bit different flavor , the only problem i see in your recipe is the cooking temp , its to high and from lots of experience i know that at those temps it will over cook the crust , leaving it dark and brittle as well as having a slightly burnt taste , not golden brown and crunchy like i like it , but it is a recipe that i will try.
 

zwiller

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YES THANKS WAYNE!

Can home fried chicken even compete with pressure roasted? My favorite is Broasted brand. Our town had a little tiny italian restaurant that had one. It was glorious. Served in a brown plastic mesh bowl and red and white checkered paper. Side of sketti was killer too. I have the brine and breading of a company that sells to Broaster owners. Good stuff. They use a special flour that does not brown as much as APF.

EDIT: I know it's not fried but if anyone has details on Kenny Rogers Roasters I'll take them!
 
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thirdeye

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your right they are similar !! , over the years i must have tried 100s of different recipes for fried chicken and this one is the 1st one i have used a salt brine mixture ,and its the1st one that i have used Turmeric in , i suspect the "brine" does something to the skin that helps get the nice crispy skin and maybe helps with the crust , i only coat the chicken once and shake off any excess flour and still get a nice crust that sticks to the chicken very well
the Turmeric adds a nice flavor as well as color ,i can see how both recipes would produce similar results , just with a bit different flavor , the only problem i see in your recipe is the cooking temp , its to high and from lots of experience i know that at those temps it will over cook the crust , leaving it dark and brittle as well as having a slightly burnt taste , not golden brown and crunchy like i like it , but it is a recipe that i will try.
Well, I think you would pull when you see the color you want rather than cooking by time? It dawned on me that I have a version where the breaded chicken goes back in the fridge on a rack for a couple of hours, but neither my online recipe or the one in my 3-ring binder mentions that. It's kind of common for recipes this old.... a version appears online and everyone copies that one. I have some recipes from Prodigy newsgroups, I'll check in there. Mrs ~t~ also recalls letting the batter sit in the fridge too.
 

cal1956

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" It dawned on me that I have a version where the breaded chicken goes back in the fridge on a rack for a couple of hours,"

this is something i have never heard of before ( not saying it wouldn't work , just a new one on me
as to when to take chicken out of the deep fryer , there are a couple of things that come to mind (1) the size of the chicken
and (2 ) the oil temp
my wife used to buy precut chicken breasts that i swear looked like they came from a full grown turkey, and in order to fully cook one of those things you had to waaay overcook the rest of the chicken, so i made her start buying whole frying hens , they are a more consistent size for frying , and thats when i started timing things , with lots and lots and lots of trial and error i found that the optimal temp for frying chicken is 340 degrees
for breasts and legs the time is 17-18 minutes , thighs the time is 14-16 minutes and wings about 14 minutes
if your recipe uses Paprika in the flour that can be used to control the color , we both like a light golden brown color so we skip using it in the flour , but by timing it the chicken is always fully cooked all the way to the bone , ( nobody wants to bite into raw chicken ) but by using the right size chicken , the right oil temp. and the right time , we have had very good results
 

thirdeye

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" It dawned on me that I have a version where the breaded chicken goes back in the fridge on a rack for a couple of hours,"
this is something i have never heard of before ( not saying it wouldn't work , just a new one on me
The reference to returning to the fridge was to let the skin dry out more before breading it, not after it was breaded.
 

cal1956

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what i would like to get is some feedback from someone that has been to cooking school about the use of the annatto oil and beef tallow , i have read what they both are , but having never cooked with them, it would be interesting to hear the thoughts of a professional cook as to how they effect the final product
the original recipe says NOT to leave them out or substitute
so it leaves me wondering about them
 

thirdeye

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My Granny used to fry potatoes in tallow, and wasn't tallow in the oil that McDonalds used for fries?
 

TNJAKE

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what i would like to get is some feedback from someone that has been to cooking school about the use of the annatto oil and beef tallow , i have read what they both are , but having never cooked with them, it would be interesting to hear the thoughts of a professional cook as to how they effect the final product
the original recipe says NOT to leave them out or substitute
so it leaves me wondering about them
I'm not a chef but I did play one on tv........

The tallow will add a bolder flavor to the chicken that you will certainly notice. thirdeye thirdeye is correct, McDonald's used to cook their fries in tallow before the healthy living folks had it banned in just about everything. Annatto has a slight nutmeg flavor but probably wouldn't be too noticeable. It will however add some nice coloring to the chicken
 

normanaj

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thirdeye thirdeye is correct, McDonald's used to cook their fries in tallow before the healthy living folks had it banned in just about everything.
As were the apple pies.Had to be careful with those puppies as they were like molton lava if bitten into to quickly but they were good.
 

chef jimmyj

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I'm not a chef but I did play one on tv........

The tallow will add a bolder flavor to the chicken that you will certainly notice. thirdeye thirdeye is correct, McDonald's used to cook their fries in tallow before the healthy living folks had it banned in just about everything. Annatto has a slight nutmeg flavor but probably wouldn't be too noticeable. It will however add some nice coloring to the chicken
Jake nailed it! Annatto for color, slight flavor. Tallow is all about Old-Time Grandma's Fried Chicken Flavor. The big reason your's/our's don't taste like Grandma's from the 60's and 70's, she used Tallow or unprocessed , not bleached, Lard. Veg Fats are highly processed to be Neutral or at least, very mild, in flavor.
The recent Tallow craze is all about flavor. Home rendered Lard tastes better than the processed Lard at the grocery store. But even that Lard adds more flavor than Veg Oil. Mixing Fats is a Flavor Trick as well and Used Oil gives a better Golden Brown Color than fresh oil. In Restaurants, it is not uncommon to add a cup of Old Fryer Oil to the freshly filled Fryer. In kind, adding a few Tablespoons or more, Tallow, Lard, Bacon Grease or Used Oil, to your pan or pot of fresh Frying Veg Oil, will improve Flavor and the Color of the finished product...JJ

Locally in PA and surrounding states, UTZ Potato Chips are a huge seller. Regular UTZ uses Canola Oil and are similar to other National Brands. Thin, Crisp and Bland. But, their Grandma UTZ, Kettle Fried Chips are fried in Lard. They are Twice the crispness with a distinctive Pork Rind flavor note. WAY BETTER FLAVOR!
 

TNJAKE

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Jake nailed it! Annatto for color, slight flavor. Tallow is all about Old-Time Grandma's Fried Chicken Flavor. The big reason your's/our's don't taste like Grandma's from the 60's and 70's, she used Tallow or unprocessed , not bleached, Lard. Veg Fats are highly processed to be Neutral or at least, very mild, in flavor.
The recent Tallow craze is all about flavor. Home rendered Lard tastes better than the processed Lard at the grocery store. But even that Lard adds more flavor than Veg Oil. Mixing Fats is a Flavor Trick as well and Used Oil gives a better Golden Brown Color than fresh oil. In Restaurants, it is not uncommon to add a cup of Old Fryer Oil to the freshly filled Fryer. In kind, adding a few Tablespoons or more, Tallow, Lard, Bacon Grease or Used Oil, to your pan or pot of fresh Frying Veg Oil, will improve Flavor and the Color of the finished product...JJ

Locally in PA and surrounding states, UTZ Potato Chips are a huge seller. Regular UTZ uses Canola Oil and are similar to other National Brands. Thin, Crisp and Bland. But, their Grandma UTZ, Kettle Fried Chips are fried in Lard. They are Twice the crispness with a distinctive Pork Rind flavor note. WAY BETTER FLAVOR!
Honestly the annatto is used as a mind trick more than anything. We've used it in a few spicy/Cajun fried chicken recipes. Adds nice red color to the first layer of the chicken and in between the strands. When doing spicy you normally add hot sauce like Tabasco or something. The hot sauce adds heat and flavor but no real color......that's where the annatto comes in. When it gives it's red appearance we no longer just taste the Tabasco, we can "see it". We eat with our eyes first. Other than that you won't miss it in your recipe. As for the tallow? You should definitely give that a go if you are in the mood for a game changer for anything fried. Don't tell your cardiologist
 

Brokenhandle

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If I'm gonna eat anything fried I want it to be in lard or tallow! And Jake is right, we eat with our eyes first... anyone remember when heinz came out with green and purple ketchup... didn't last long but tasted the same.

Ryan
 

cal1956

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thanks for the information, i AM temped to try the tallow for frying even though i have already had 1 heart attack ...lol
seems like i can skip the annatto oil
 

forktender

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you know i never even thought about taking pictures of fried chicken before , but next time i will do it .
what makes this different than all the other recipes i have tried is : the chicken skin and crust are almost as one.... meaning crispy, crunchy and full of flavorful , i think the brine has something to do with doing that, ( the chicken so far) has been tender, and moist , as far as the Annetto oil is concerned , it just seems like oil would "float " on top of the brine and not do much , i could be wrong though !!
i have never used "beef tallow" before so i'm in the dark concerning that also
maybe someone that has been to cooking school can explain how this recipe works so well,
i love the fact that time after time i get crispy, crunchy chicken with no "soggy skin"
Next time, slather a few pieces in cheap yellow mustard before to dredge it in the flour, you won't be sorry. Don't worry you can't taste the mustard when it's done. Just try it!!!
 

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