Down Home Issue

Down Home Fried Chicken


1 (3½- to 4-pound) whole chicken, cut into pieces

Salt, to taste

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

2 eggs, beaten

½ cup half and half

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon paprika

½ teaspoon ground thyme

½ teaspoon granulated garlic

½ teaspoon cayenne pepper

Peanut oil, for frying


using legs and thigh would make recipe more uniform


Drain and rinse the chicken pieces thoroughly, then pat them dry with paper towels. Season with salt and pepper.

Mix eggs and half and half in a shallow bowl. Mix flour, paprika, more salt and pepper, thyme, granulated garlic and cayenne pepper in a second shallow pan or bowl.

Bread the chicken pieces by first dunking them into the egg-half and half mixture, then into the seasoned flour. Shake off excess flour.

To fry the chicken, fill a large, deep-sided cast-iron skillet or Dutch oven with 1 inch of oil. Clip a frying thermometer to the side of the skillet, place over medium-high heat, and heat the oil to 350˚F.

Fry chicken pieces skin-side down in batches of no more than 4 pieces at a time for 8 minutes per side, or until the meat temperature registers 165˚F on an instant-read thermometer. Remove the chicken with metal tongs or a spider skimmer to a paper towel-lined platter. Repeat until all the chicken is fried, regulating the burner as needed to maintain a temperature of about 325˚F as you fry the chicken. Let the chicken rest for 5 minutes before serving to allow the juices to settle.