Friday, June 17, 2011

Daddy's "slightly" fried chicken

I love fried chicken.  And I love braised chicken too.  Here's an easy-to-make Father's Day special that combines both: Daddy's Slightly Fried Chicken.  

There's so many cool things going on in this recipe.  You can braise the chicken the day before, then bread and fry just before serving (which only takes a few minutes).  You can also bread the braised chicken up to 4 hours ahead, for that matter. 

Switch up the herbs if you like.  I use what's in my garden.  This time around I call for chopped fresh thyme, but you could just as easily use parsley, chives, or rosemary--whatever floats your boat.  You can't go wrong. 

I can just sit and eat these bad boys out of hand with a few lemon wedges, but they're also great between those yummy French hamburger rolls (here in Birmingham, I find the rolls in the deli section at Publix).  I mix up a little mayo-Sriracha sauce, then slather it over the rolls to create one tasty sandwich. (I've done it when the chicken's right out of the fryer, but I've also made the sandwiches with leftovers right out of the fridge.)

Here's a video of me preparing the recipe on "Daytime Alabama" with my buddy David Lamb.

Give it a try and let me know what you think!

Daddy’s Fried Chicken

Olive oil
1 pack boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1/8 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 bulb of garlic cut in half horizontally
2 sprigs of rosemary
1/2 cup white wine
2 cups of chicken broth
1/2 loaf of soft French bread (not a baguette)
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup all-purpose flour
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
2 tsp. fresh chopped thyme
Vegetable oil
Sea salt or kosher salt
1 lemon, cut into wedges

Heat olive oil in a skillet big enough to hold the chicken in one layer; add salt, pepper, garlic, rosemary, wine, and chicken broth.

Put a lid on the skillet, and simmer for 45 minutes or until thighs are cooked through (check at 30 minutes-add more broth if needed to cover the chicken). Allow chicken to cool at least 15 minutes.

While the chicken is cooking, process bread in a food processor with 1/2 cup of cheese to make fine bread crumbs (may need to do this in 2 batches).

In three shallow bowls: add flour into one, and season it with salt and pepper; put the beaten eggs in second; combine bread crumb mixture, remaining 1/2 cup of cheese, and thyme in third bowl.

When the chicken is cool enough to handle, pat dry and toss in flour, dusting off any excess flour.  Place chicken into the beaten eggs, making sure to coat well.  Place chicken into breadcrumb mixture; roll and pat mix onto chicken pieces. Put them on a tray and refrigerate until ready to fry (can prepare up to 4 hours ahead – allow chicken to stand at room temperature for 20 minutes before frying).

Heat vegetable oil to 350˚ in a Dutch oven or deep fat fryer (Dutch oven or fryer should be no more than 3/4 full).  Add the chicken a piece or two at a time, frying 45 seconds to 1 minute or until golden brown and crisp. Take out and drain well on paper towels.

Sprinkle with sea salt; squeeze a wedge of fresh lemon over chicken.

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