Emeril's Southern Fried Chicken

2 cupsbuttermilk
1/4 cupEmeril's Original Essence
1 tablespoonsalt
1 tablespoonsugar
1/2 head clovegarlic, peeled and crushed
One 3 1/2 to 4 poundchicken, cut into 8 pieces
2 cupsall-purpose flour
1 tablespooncayenne pepper
peanut oil for frying

Equipment List

Measuring Cups and Spoons


Combine the buttermilk, 2 tablespoons of the Essence, salt, sugar and garlic in a large non-reactive bowl. Stir to blend. Immerse the chicken in the mixture and refrigerate for at least 4 hours and for up to 24 hours.

Combine the flour, the remaining 2 tablespoons Essence and the cayenne in a large doubled brown paper bag or plastic freezer bag and shake to blend. Drop the chicken, a few pieces at a time, into the flour mixture and shake thoroughly to completely coat. Remove the chicken and shake off the excess flour. Repeat with the remaining chicken pieces.

Place the coated chicken on a large wire rack set over a sheet pan and let rest until ready to fry, at least 20 minutes.

Heat 2 1/2-inches of oil to 300 F over medium-high heat in the Emerilware Cast-Iron Chicken Fryer. Fry the chicken in batches, skin side down, until golden brown, about 10 minutes. Turn and fry until golden brown on the second side, 8 to 10 minutes longer.

Remove the chicken and drain on paper towels. (Note: An even oil temperature is the key to success; a clip-on candy/deep-fry thermometer should be kept in the pot at all times. And the temperature should remain between 280 F and 300 F at all times.)

Allow the chicken to rest at least 5 minutes before serving.

Serves 4.

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