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Author Notes: The real kicker here that the chicken pieces get dipped into the buttermilk and flour mixture twice so that the ratio of meat to crust is practically 1:1. The crust is perfectly thick, crisp, and well-seasoned. In my cookbook, this chicken sits on a black pepper biscuit with pickles, a drizzle of honey, and plenty of seedy mustard, but we recently enjoyed the chicken on thick slices of white bread with mayonnaise and crisp dill pickles.
Make enough for leftovers because nothing beats thinly sliced cold fried chicken over a bowl of greens. —Ashley Rodriguez
For the spice mix:
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried marjoram
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs (about 1 pound)
For the flour and buttermilk dredges:
- 1 cup (140 grams) all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 cup (240 milliliters) buttermilk
- 1 egg
- 4 cups vegetable, canola, or peanut oil, for frying
- The day before you plan on frying the chicken, whisk together the paprika, oregano, thyme, marjoram, garlic powder, pepper, and salt to form the spice mix. Set aside 1 tablespoon of the spice mix, then sprinkle the rest all over the chicken thighs. Cover the chicken with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
- To fry the chicken, mix together the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and reserved spice mix in a pie plate or shallow dish.
- Mix together the buttermilk and egg in another pie plate or shallow dish.
- Set up a wire rack over a sheet tray. Fill a large, heavy skillet (I use my 12-inch cast-iron pan) with oil until 3/4-inch high. Set on high heat and bring to 360° F. Preheat the oven to 375° F.
- Dredge the chicken in the buttermilk mixture, then the flour mixture, then the buttermilk mixture again, and finally back into the flour.
- Fry the chicken for 4 to 5 minutes per side, until deep golden brown all over. If the chicken is not fully cooked (the internal temperature should read 165° F), place the chicken on the wire rack and bake for 8 to 10 minutes, or until just cooked through.
- This recipe is a Community Pick!