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Robert St. John

Restaurateur, author, enthusiastic traveler, & world-class eater.

Fried Chicken


3 lb                  Whole Chicken (fresh)

3 cups              Buttermilk

2 tsp                Salt

1 Tbl                Black pepper

2 cups              Flour

Crisco for deep frying



Wash chicken well in cold water and cut chicken. Place chicken in a bowl with ice water to draw out excess blood. Pat chicken dry and sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper and marinate in buttermilk for two hours in the refrigerator.

Season flour with salt and pepper. Heat Crisco in a large cast iron skillet to 365 degrees on a deep-fat thermometer. There should be just enough grease in the skillet to come up just around the edge (halfway) of each piece of chicken. Drain chicken thoroughly and dust with flour shaking off all excess.

Place chicken, skin side down, in oil and make sure none of the chicken is touching. Cover the skillet and cook for approximately five to seven minutes, turn and cover for another five to seven minutes. Uncover the skillet and continue cooking for 10 to 15 minutes. Only turn the chicken once.

Cook chicken in smaller batches if skillet is too small. Drain on a wire cake rack with a paper bag or paper towels underneath the rack to catch excess grease (draining straight to a paper bag causes the chicken to sit in the drained grease).

Yield: 8 pieces

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