Friday 2 October 2015

Using Up the Buttermilk: Fried Chicken with Two Sauces

Finding a $5 waffle iron at a church sale means David and I can make and eat waffles but it also means we end up with a carton buttermilk that we need to finish. And what better way to finish it up than to make some fried chicken. 

I've never deep fried chicken before, partially out oil burn fears and partially out of the belief that I didn't have the proper kitchen equipment. But David told me we could deep fry in our cast iron skillet and that solidified our dinner plans that evening.

If I have talked to you in person, chances are I've mentioned the amazing blog, The Woks of Life, which has upped my Chinese home cooking game. They have other types of recipes too and we took their Korean Fried Chicken Tenders recipes out for a test run.

Ingredients (taken from The Woks of Life)

For the tenders:
2 chicken breasts (cut into 15 tenders)
Buttermilk (enough to coat the chicken)
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon dijon mustard

1 ½ cups flour
3 tablespoons Korean chili powder
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper

Vegetable oil (enough to fill a small, deep pot for frying)

For the sauce:
2 tablespoons gochujang paste
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon honey or agave syrup
½ teaspoon sesame oil
2 teaspoons dijon mustard

The trick to getting that super crusty breaded chicken is to batter the chicken twice! I let David handle most of the battering and frying while I prepared some salad and dressing.

- cut up breasts, mix together buttermilk, soy sauce and dijon, leave chicken in buttermilk for 20 mins
- prep breading
- mix sauce
- heat up oil in pan, dredge chicken in breading, then the buttermilk marinade, then breading again and fry

While we were dining we saw that the breading was falling off the chicken and realized that the steam and heat from the cooked chicken was making the breading soggy. The blog recommends placing the just fried chicken onto cooling racks. That would have solved our problem since the parts of chicken that were exposed to air stayed very crispy in comparison to the parts that were laying on the paper towels.

To use up even more of the buttermilk, I found a quick Buttermilk Parsley Salad Dressing from Martha Stewart which I used on a salad and as another sauce option for the chicken.

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
5 tablespoons buttermilk
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped parsley

- whisk together

Though the recipe doesn't call for it, the dressing really needed some salt and pepper.

The fried chicken was amazingly delicious. It probably helped that we bought some organic chicken breasts and that the Korean dipping sauce was basically spicy sugar. This didn't take as much work as I thought it would. Fried food is still fried food though so we won't be doing this too often but when we do, we will surely do the double breaded method since that made all the difference.

Do you fry at home?


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