Friday, April 13, 2012

This Fried Chicken is Whey Good!

Fried Chicken, soaked in buttermilk first.  I love this meal.  When you soak chicken in buttermilk (and other seasonings of course!), the chicken takes on a tangyness from the milk, but is also tenderized.  Later when you bread and fry the chicken you will notice a huge difference.  For this meal, I had a large bowlful of whey, left over from making ricotta.  Instead of tossing the whey out, I chose to soak a chicken in it, and make biscuits.

My starting place for this chicken's soaking: a bowl full of whey.

Into the whey: 1 Chile de Arbol, crushed, 2 bay leaves, 1 head garlic smashed, 1/2 c. kosher salt, 1 bunch fresh thyme, 1/4 c honey, a few Tasmaninan Pepperberries - stir to combine.

Oh, you don't have any Tasmanian Pepperberries?  You don't know where to get them?  Just have an Mother In Law as awesome as mine.  I had never heard of them either, and she brought them home after one of her trips.  Or, if you can't have my mother in law, I suppose you could Google them.  You could also of course use regular peppercorns, but it's less fun to say.

Brined chicken - overnight preferably - flour, Old Bay, oil.  Begin by heating your oil over med-high heat, in a pan with sides high enough that ensure you won't have to call the fire department.  Stir 1 Tbl Old Bay into 2 c. flour, and put in a sturdy paper bag.  Drain the chicken pieces, then toss in the seasoned flour.  Fry the chicken for 12-15 minutes, turning to ensure all the sides become equally crispy and brown.

Biscuits!  I used Alton Brown's Southern Biscuit recipe, and substituted whey for buttermilk.  The biscuits were flaky and light, and had a great flavor.  I may make ricotta all the time, just to have some whey around!

So if you are wondering how beautiful and golden the chicken turned out, and how tall the biscuits rose in the oven.....too bad.  My phone ate my pictures.

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