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15.5.14

FRIED CHICKEN


Six week old chickens used to be small, skinny things, now they are the size of what a roasting chicken should be. Chickens grow so fast these days that their bone development cannot keep up and the immature bones just keep on bleeding. Severing the femoral artery that runs along in the thigh helps, but it’s not enough. Most of the blood will pour out of the drumstick anyway. The best solution is to brine the cut up chicken in the fridge overnight. Restaurants often par cook their chickens before frying. That expels much of the blood, but since a lot of the flavour is cooked out with par cooking, personally I don’t find par cooking attractive. 

The single most important factor is brining the chicken in salt water. Salt water draws out the blood and tenderizes the meat. Unless you pan cook boneless chicken fingers, you have to brine first, especially the drumsticks and the thighs. This was not the case twenty years ago, but this is a brave new world folks. 

I picked two drumsticks showing signs of internal bleeding with the bone partially hacked off. Normally there would have been a brown spot of cooked blood on the drumsticks such as these. But with brining in salt water they turned out beautiful. There was no blood, the meat was tender and succulent and the coating was crispy and divine.

2 chicken drumsticks
1 to 2 cups of cold water
2 Tbsp salt
1/4 cup flour
sprinkling of dry marjoram
2 pinch of dry onion flakes
2 sprinklings of Chef’s Salt
oil for frying

• Wash drumsticks and place them on a paper towel lined plate.
• Cut away the fat and the excess skin and discard.
• Make brine from cold water and salt.
• Add the drumsticks to the brine.
• Cover and place in the fridge for four to six hours, but no longer than twelve.
• Remove drumsticks and dry with paper towels. Discard the brine.
• In a mixing bowl, combine flour, marjoram, onion flakes and Chef’s Salt.
• Add the chicken to the drenching flour and toss to coat.



Heat up the frying oil on medium heat - SLOWLY. Do NOT heat up oil on high temperatures. If your drumstick burns, the oil was too hot. 

There is no need to deep fry. Pan frying produces perfectly fried chickens. Unless there is a large batch, oil should come up half way of the thickest part of the meat. Leave space between the pieces and turn them often with a pair of kitchen thongs to ensure uniformity. Good quality peanut or canola oil works, but I prefer light olive oil for frying. Never fry in good quality virgin olive oil it will burn like the dickens. If your pan frying smells up the kitchen, your oil is crude and cheap. Good quality oil on medium heat will not fill up your kitchen with oil haze.

• On medium heat, slowly heat up the oil in a heavy pot.
• Add the drumsticks to the hot oil.
• Fry on both sides for a couple of minutes.
• With a pair of kitchen thongs remove the drumsticks and roll them into the remaining drenching flour again.
• Return drumsticks to the oil and fry on both sides on medium heat.
• Halfway through put a lid over the pot for 4-5 minutes, but keep turning the drumsticks.
• Remove the lid and finish crisping up the drumsticks until golden brown.
• Remove drumsticks from the oil and place on a paper towel lined plate for a couple of minutes before serving.



6 comments:

  1. These look devine and your method makes them moist and succulent. I will have to make some soon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have been thinking about it for a long time.

      Delete
  2. I have NEVER brined chicken or anything else for that matter but I think it's time to give it a try. I just wish I didn't hate (deep) frying so much.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's so worthwhile Maria

      Delete
  3. My mouth is watering!! Dare not show this to my husband or he won't be so happy with our leftovers..
    You really do present the best cooking techniques, Zsuzsa. This one was new to me..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dolores let me know if you try it.

      Delete

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I began to post recipes for my family and it turned out to be a work in progress. "zsuzsa is in the kitchen" has over 900 recipes of Hungarian and international recipes. My recipes are organized into a cookbook format. On top of the page click on the cookbook to get access to all my recipes. If I ever figure out how to add a printer friendly gadget I will add it. In the meantime feel free to cut and paste. Happy cooking!

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