Nashville-Style Hot Fried Chickenby Rory
If you're a fan of fried chicken and can take the heat, you'll love Nashville-style fried chicken! Keep it traditional by serving with slices of white bread and sliced pickles.
Nashville-Style Hot Fried Chicken
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Meats & Barbecue
2 3-4 lb. Chickens, Cut Into Pieces with Breasts Halved
1 Tbsp. Black Pepper, Coarse Ground
1 Tbsp. + 4 tsp. Kosher Salt
4 Large Eggs
2 C. Buttermilk
2 Tbsp. Vinegar-Based Hot Sauce (like Tabasco)
4 C. All-Purpose Flour
Vegetable Oil (for Frying)
4 Tbsp. Nashville Hot Chicken Seasoning
Sliced White Bread
Rinse and pat dry the pieces of chicken, then sprinkle pieces with pepper and 1 Tbsp. kosher salt. Transfer to a large bowl, cover and refrigerate for three hours (or complete this step and chill the chicken for up to one day ahead of cooking).
Whisk together four eggs, buttermilk, and Tabasco (or other vinegary hot) sauce in a large bowl until well combined. In another large bowl, season the 4 C. all-purpose flour with the remaining 4 tsp. kosher salt.
Using a Dutch oven, deep cast iron skillet, or deep fryer, pour in enough vegetable oil so that it is 2″ deep (a narrower pan will require less oil to reach 2″ depth; a broader pan requires more oil, but can fry more pieces of chicken at a single time). Secure deep fry/candy thermometer on the pan and heat oil over medium-high heat, checking thermometer frequently until oil measures 325°F.
Pat the chicken pieces dry again. One piece at a time, prepare for frying by rolling in the flour mixture, tapping on the edge of the bowl to remove excess, dipping in the egg-buttermilk mixture, holding above the bowl to let extra liquid drip off. Drag through the flour mixture a second time and set aside.
Use heat-proof tongs (the longer, the better) to place one or several pieces of chicken in the hot oil, depending on the size of your pan. Fry the chicken, turning every few minutes, until the breading outside looks golden brown and crispy.
Use a meat thermometer to make certain white meat pieces have an internal temp of at least 160°F, and dark meat pieces of chicken are at least 165°F. Each batch of chicken should take 15 – 18 min to cook. Allow vegetable oil to reheat to 325°F between batches. Remove chicken from the fryer to a clean wire cooling rack, set inside a rimmed baking sheet to allow the excess oil to drip off. When you have finished cooking the chicken, turn off heat and allow the vegetable oil to cool slightly.
In a heatproof bowl, whisk the Nashville Hot Chicken Seasoning with 1 C. of the slightly cooled frying oil to make a spicy paste. Brush each piece of fried chicken generously with the spicy paste.
Serve fried chicken on a piece of white bread, topped with sliced pickles.