As always, birthday boys get to request whatever they want for dinner. Ernie, rather predictably—which I say in a loving way—wanted fried chicken and potato salad. I often do an oven fried chicken but haven't done traditional fried chicken all that often. I poked around online and ended up on Serious Eats…always a reliable stop. I went with their Southern Fried Chicken recipe. Now that I look back on it I realize I didn't follow it well at all…and yet it turned out pretty great. I was supposed to put an egg in the buttermilk marinade. Ha! I bet that would have made a difference keeping the breading together…some of our broke off. I'm also not the most experienced frier and didn't have a thermometer, so there was some pilot error. Eh, you do the best you can.
The recipe calls for browning it in peanut oil and then finishing in the oven which worked well. I think I didn't have the heat of the peanut oil quite right so it was probably a bit greasier than it should have been (still delicious). I seasoned the shit out of the marinade (OH MY GOD….those are totally Owen's words coming out of my mouth)…mmmm….seasoned the marinade strongly? For one cup up chicken I used 1 cup buttermilk with 1 tablespoon cayenne and 1-2 teaspoons smoked paprika. If I weren't on the low fodmap thing I would certainly have added garlic and onion powders. Oh, I think I added some oregano too. We salted the chicken and then put it in the marinade for 5-6 hours. For the breading I used gluten free flour with a good helping of cayenne and Old Bay seasoning (which is low fodap!), and salt and pepper. I cooked the chicken until it looked done and then put it all in a roasting pan and finished it in a 350 degree oven. Oh, and the hint to add some of the marinade to the breading was really smart…it did give it a nice thick craggy coating. The night we ate it I thought I had over salted it all…not the meat but the coating. However the next day, having it cold, I thought it was perfect. There's definitely room for improvement, and it's not something I will do often, but I was pleased just the same.
Last time I made potato salad (and my potato salad is the one I grew up with….very basic with russets, mayo, boiled eggs, and onion…..chives from the back yard if you're feeling fancy) I left out the onion (sigh) and added some finely diced celery for the missing texture. It was so so. This time I made some onion oil by frying about a third of a red onion in olive oil and then straining. I tossed the potatoes in the onion oil before adding the mayo and eggs and celery and it was much better.
I don't have any good pictures from that night…we were too ravenous, but here's a leftover cold piece in the refrigerator. One spot overdone a bit…I think this was at the end when the oil was a little low.
I think we're going to have to plan another fried chicken theme for a house concert…..
Trying out the medication for my dizziness today. Feeling a little buzzy and my ears feel wacky…but a bit less dizzy.