If you’ve been following the updates on the Facebook Fan page, you would have seen where I was asking for suggestions for a fried chicken recipe, as I had a severe craving and didn’t feel like KFC or Popeye’s! I wanted chicken that had that strong home-fried taste, texture and smell. I wanted to control the spices I used as well, since the goal was to recreate the same sort of chicken I enjoyed as a boy growing up on the islands. I still recall my mom saying “yuh have to let it cool down”, ignoring that and feeling the pain of steaming hot chicken.
Thanks to everyone who left me their suggestions and family secret recipes. Rather than use one, I combined some aspects of all and the end product was simply amazing. When all you see are bones on a plate after your children had their dinner, you know you’ve struck gold with that particular recipe. So again.. thanks to everyone who contributed.
For seasoning the chicken:
5-6 LBS chicken pieces (I used legs and thighs)
1 teaspoon peppersauce (hot sauce – use as much as you can tolerate)
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ginger (powder or as I did – fresh grated)
1 teaspoon green seasoning (see notes below if you don’t have green seasoning)
1 lime / lemon or 3 tablespoons of vinegar to wash the chicken pieces before seasoning.
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
For the dusting:
1-2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
* oil for frying. I shallow fried, so I used about 2 1/2 cups vegetable oil.
* You’ll also need 2 eggs.
Start off by trimming of fat and excess skin, but I left a fair amount of skin on the chicken ( you can remove it while you’re eating). I find that the skin give the meat a sort of protection and prevents it from drying out while frying. Then I pour the lime or lemon juice over it (you can also use vinegar). Rinse with water and strain dry. Then it’s on to seasoning the chicken (btw I used dark cuts of meat and I tried to keep them all the same size). In a large bowl use the ingredients mentioned above to season the chicken. Make sure to stir well, cover and allow to marinate in the fridge for about 2 hours.
In a heavy pan, heat the oil on medium/high heat and while this heats up, lets do a couple things.
1. Crack the two eggs into a small bowl and whisk… then add to the bowl with the seasoned chicken and give it a good stir. Try to get all pieces of the chicken coated with this egg mixture.
2. Pour the flour onto a plate and add the paprika and black pepper and mix well.
The next step is to dust the pieces of chicken into the flour mixture we just made. Be sure to cover all pieces and shake off any excess flour before placing into the hot oil. My pan was not very large, so I did 3 pieces at a time, as I didn’t want to crowd the pan and have it go soggy from the reduction in the oil’s temperature. Depending on how big the pieces of chicken you have and the cut (dark or white meat), the cooking time will vary between 15 and 20 minutes. In my case it took about 18 minutes and I flipped each piece every 4-5 minutes, since I was shallow frying. If you find that the outside is going brown too fast, it’s an indication that your oil may be too hot. Adjust accordingly.
Remember that it’s hot oil that you’re working with so be very careful. Have a wire tray or paper-towel lined basket ready to place the cooked pieces of chicken to drain off any excess oil. Continue doing in batches and remember to give it a few minutes to cool down before serving.
Give this a try and I’m sure you’ll be amazed at how tasty, moist (without being “wet”) and crispy at the same time. I’d really appreciate it if you leave me a comment below, even if it’s just to say hello. And for those of you who assisted with this recipe on Facebook, thanks. BTW, if you’ve not already connected with us on Facebook, do so NOW by clicking on the image below.