How to make it

  • Place chicken pieces into a plastic container and cover with buttermilk. Cover and refrigerate for 12 to 24 hours.
  • Melt enough shortening (over low heat) to come just 1/8-inch up the side of a 12-inch cast iron skillet or heavy fry pan. Once shortening liquefies raise heat to 325 degrees F. Do not allow oil to go over 325 degrees F.
  • Drain chicken in a colander. Combine salt, paprika, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper. Liberally season chicken with this mixture. Dredge chicken in flour and shake off excess.
  • Place chicken skin side down into the pan. Put thighs in the center, and breast and legs around the edge of the pan. The oil should come half way up the pan. Cook chicken until golden brown on each side, approximately 10 to 12 minutes per side. More importantly, the internal temperature should be right around 180 degrees. (Be careful to monitor shortening temperature every few minutes.)
  • Drain chicken on a rack over a sheet pan. Don't drain by setting chicken directly on paper towels or brown paper bags. If you need to hold the chicken before serving, cover loosely with foil but avoid holding in a warm oven, especially if it's a gas oven.
  • Note: Following is an excerpt from a reviewer: I am going to re-iterate some important things that were missed in the recipe that is online that will make the dish a lot better. These have been stated in the comments already but I will consolidate for new readers. 1. The recipe calls for 2 Tbs of Kosher Salt. If you are using Iodized salt cut this to a max of 4 tsp. It is roughly the same salt by weight. Even then, you could stand to cut the salt a bit more depending on your tastes. 2. Do not use ALL the rub, even though it states to use liberally. I always butcher and use 2 Fryer chickens and I still have rub left over when I am done seasoning. You can use liberally without going crazy. Keep the leftover spices for next time you cook this meal (you will). 3. The recipe online states the temperature should be 325, but the show gave the temperature as 350. I have tried both, and the crust was a lot soggier and less crispy when I cooked at the lower temperature. COOK AT 350!!! 4. Although the recipe says the Crisco should be at an 1/8", this isn't enough oil to cook properly. When your chicken pieces are in the pan the oil should be halfway up the sides of the chicken to ensure your crust is uniformly crispy. The points above should be considered by anyone making this recipe. My own personal notes: After I have dredged in flour I will let the chicken sit for 15 minutes or so. Sometimes I even dredge a second time. It makes for a crispier crust. I substitute my own rubs to taste. The one included is very good, but we like to vary it up (my wife is a cumin freak). Most of the time I use the one listed here, but feel free to try something new. I have tried this recipe using an iron skillet and an aluminum pan. I get consistantly better results with the Iron skillet.

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