The realization that today is National Fried Chicken Day sparked a craving for a favorite recipe: Lindsay Autry’s addictive rendition of the Southern classic.
The North Carolina-born chef, who plans to open The Regional Kitchen & Public House restaurant in West Palm Beach this summer, gives her bird a nice, long bath in a zesty buttermilk marinade before dusting with a flour-cornstarch mixture, then frying.
Serves 42 cups buttermilk
2 lemons, zest only (reserve juice for another use)
1 tablespoon dried Greek oregano or fresh oregano
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon granulated garlic or garlic powder
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup cornstarch
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon ground black pepper
1 quart pure canola oil for frying
1/2 cup Florida honey
2 tablespoons of your favorite hot sauce (we used sriracha)
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, chopped roughly1. In a blender, combine the buttermilk, lemon zest, oregano, Dijon mustard, garlic powder, black pepper and thyme. Blend until well combined. Place all the chicken pieces in a large resealable plastic bag and pour buttermilk mixture over chicken. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to overnight to get the best flavor. Remove chicken from the buttermilk brine, drain well, and discard the liquid.
2. In a large bowl combine the all-purpose flour, cornstarch, kosher salt and pepper. Use a whisk or fork to combine well. Place the chicken into the flour mixture and press into the flour, making sure to coat well. Allow the chicken to sit in the flour mixture while the oil is preheating.
3. Preheat a large cast iron skillet over medium heat with the canola oil until it reaches 315°. Shake off the excess flour from the chicken pieces, and gently place in the skillet.
4. Fry the chicken for 4 minutes on each side until golden brown. Use a thermometer to test the internal temperature of the chicken, making sure it is at 165°.
5. Drain the chicken on a rack or paper towels, seasoning with kosher salt as they come out of the fryer. While the chicken is cooling, combine all of the ingredients for the dipping sauce in a small bowl and whisk to combine.