In happier thoughts, I don’t think it’s a secret how much I love fried chicken. Mostly from the Colonel, but even when I see it at restaurants, I feel compelled to try it (Korean Fried Chicken, though sharing the initials with KFC, is not quite up to the measure, but still great). So when I saw this article on Southern Fried Chicken on Serious Eats (link to the recipe itself, without the background), I was so happy. Pretty much every article I’ve read on duplicating the magic of KFC (the non-Korean kind) basically said the “secret” is their pressure fryer, that most people aren’t going to have in their home, and even a lot of commercial kitchens won’t have such a thing. As much as I’d like to, I don’t think MrFodder is going to be too happy with us having a pressure fryer in our house. So this will be the next best thing.
The first benefit of making it myself: I can substitute out the egg and the buttermilk with alternatives. For the egg, I just used the egg replacement powder (didn’t even bother adding the water), and for buttermilk, I made the vegan alternative (half a lemon squeezed into one cup of milk, leave to sit for 5 minutes so that it kinda curdles).
I pretty much followed the recipe, except for two changes. I added some of Frank’s Hot Sauce to the marinade, and I made it slightly healthier by only frying it in a little bit of oil, rather than deep frying it, and didn’t do the extra crunchy step. It was enough to get that golden brown crust, though not quite as crispy as KFC. It was more of a soft coating, but was still tasty. Next time, I’d definitely add more of the hot sauce. I just happened to see it at the supermarket, and thought I’d try it, but it smelled pretty spicy. I guess between the buttermilk and the sheer amount of chicken (I used 1kg), the spice was mostly lost, and it only had a slight hint of spice.
They actually turned out really moist as well, even with the dairy-free, egg-free method. Really happy with this method, though I might tweak the spice mixture a bit. Apparently my boss used to work at KFC, and he claims they use a lot of white pepper. Going to give it a try next time I made this, but we still have heaps of it in the freezer. >_< Oh, on that note, it freezes pretty well, actually. It’s soggy when microwaved, but if you chuck it in the oven for a bit, it’s just as good as it was originally.