5 Tips to Improve Your Fried Chicken Recipe

5 Tips to Improve Your Fried Chicken Recipe

Creating the perfect fried chicken recipe isn’t easy, but knowing a few tips can help you keep improving. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced cook, the tips below will help you elevate the texture and flavor of any fried chicken recipe.

Tip 1: Soak with a marinade

Most Southern fried chicken recipes start with dipping in some kind of marinade, which uses buttermilk, milk, eggs, and pickle juice. Adding a good amount of salt to this marinade then helps the chicken stay moist.

This works exactly the same way as brine. Standard brine is a solution of salt (approximately 6% salt by weight) dissolved in water. When chicken is brine, the salt dissolves the proteins in the muscle structure of the meat, loosening it and allowing it to retain more water while cooking. Marinated chicken lost 30 to 40 percent less moisture than unmarinated chicken.

Simply place the chicken in a zip-top bag and fill the bag with buttermilk (or regular milk, or a mixture of the two). Then add salt to taste, seal the bag and refrigerate for at least 3 hours, or up to 24 hours.

Tip 2: Add Wine to the Marinade

Adding alcohol (like spirits like vodka) to your marinade mixture helps create a crust that stays light and crunchy rather than heavy, greasy, or gritty.

When frying chicken, the liquid evaporates and the breading dehydrates. Afterwards, the proteins in the marinade and flour set and begin to brown, which imparts flavor to the crust. The more surface area you have and the crispier the crust, the tastier it will be.

Alcohol helps in both areas. First, it’s more volatile than water (which is the main ingredient in buttermilk, pickle juice, or pretty much any other fried chicken marinade you’ll use). Therefore, it evaporates faster and more violently. This helps to remove moisture from the chicken shell faster, while also creating larger air bubbles, which increases the surface area of the shell. Both of these things mean crisper, lighter fried chicken.

Finally, wine also inhibits the formation of gluten. Gluten is the protein network that forms when flour and water combine. This is important for things like bread and pizza crust, which need a springy, chewy structure, but for crispy crusts, you want to minimize gluten formation. For an extra crispy crust, add an ounce of vodka (two tablespoons) per cup of liquid to the marinade.

Tip 3: Add a marinade to the flour

Have you ever noticed that if you bread a large batch of chicken, the breaded slices you end up with are crispier, crunchier, and have more surface area than the breaded slices you started with? This is because as you work, some of the marinade drips from the chicken into the dry seasoned flour mixture, forming little clumps that stick to subsequent chicken pieces. When chicken nuggets are fried, the chunks dehydrate, brown, and crisp, adding extra flavor and crunch.

So why not achieve this phenomenon by adding some marinade to the dry seasoned flour mix?

For every cup of flour the recipe calls for, you can drizzle about two tablespoons of the marinade on top of it. After you drizzle the marinade on top, use your fingertips or a whisk to work it into the flour, then add the chicken pieces to coat them.

Tip 4: Use the Right Oil and Temperature

Use a neutral oil with a high smoke point, such as vegetable or peanut oil. Keep the oil temperature around 350-375°F (175-190°C) for even cooking and a crispy finish. Then cook the chicken pieces for about 2-4 minutes per side, just long enough to get a nice dark brown on the outside and an internal temperature of 165° (this temperature is more suitable for optimal eating pleasure; since the chicken is already cooked, it’s here with the food safety has nothing to do).

Tip 5: Double Fry

Frying will remove moisture from the outer skin and make it crispy, but you can’t fry it any longer than the meat underneath is cooked. Leave the chicken too long and you’ll end up with meat that’s extra crispy on the outside but dry and overcooked. Fry it once, let the chicken cool completely, then fry it a second time, and you’ll end up with extra crispy crust and still juicy meat.

Fry the chicken as usual, then let it sit at room temperature for at least half an hour before frying. You can even refrigerate the chicken overnight and fry it again just before serving. This is a fantastic way to revitalize fried chicken leftovers (as if such a thing existed), and your chicken will be even better the next day.If you want to know how to make crispy fried chicken, you can read our article Why is Korean Fried Chicken so Crispy.

By applying these tips, you can drastically improve your fried chicken recipe, making it even tastier, crispier, and irresistible. Remember, fried chicken is an art that requires constant experimentation and tweaking to master the unique flavors over time. May you enjoy the cooking process and the satisfying and appreciative flavors that come with every fried chicken.

We are Australia’s Authentic Korean Fried Chicken brand, we bring you the real taste of Korea with our Authentic Fried Chicken brand. Our team is serious about Korean food and committed to bringing you the most delicious fried chicken.

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