A Southerner’s diet is world famous. No doubt about it. I grew up with Grandparents that always tended a large garden, and cooked everything the right way – none of which would pass any sort of health test today. Bacon grease was as important as salt and pepper. I miss those meals.
My absolute favorite was Grandmother’s pan fried chicken. I firmly believe that ‘pan fried’ is the way God intended chicken to be served. The chicken stays as tender and juicy as deep fried, but the main difference is the on the outside. Since the chicken is pan fried, the breading becomes crisp – almost a crust – giving it a great texture and flavor. Since there isn’t as much breading, it’s easy to eat much more than you planned for. This is a way to do it:
2 to 3 lb. frying chicken
3/4 c. flour
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. each pepper and paprika
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
2 tbsp. water
1 c. Wesson olive oil
Rinse chicken and pat dry. Combine flour and seasonings in bowl. Beat egg with water. Shake chicken in flour mixture until well floured. Dip in egg, then shake again in flour until completely covered. In heavy fry pan, heat oil (375 degrees). Fry chicken, skin side down, 12 minutes, then turn and fry 10 minutes, covered, then 35 minutes, uncovered, until chicken is tender and juices run clear. Makes 4 to 6 servings.
We’d always turn the grease and leftovers in the pan into gravy – thicken it with flour and serve on white rice. My mouth is watering.
On visits, I can vividly remember my Grandmother getting up at 4:00AM on Fall Saturdays and pan frying chicken. It was the best alarm clock – everyone would be hovering in no time. She’d have it packed up and ready to go by 7:00 for our tailgate at Clemson. Always a blue-ribbon performance.
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