Montana Trail House
Fried chicken can be a hit at your next dinner party— but only if you prepare it correctly. Nate Courtland, Chef and Partner at Montana’s Trail House shared a few great tips to make sure your fried yard bird is better than ever.
As Courtland puts it: “To make the best fried chicken you always want to brine your chicken and let it rest for at least 3-4 hours. The brine will season the chicken all the way through the meat and it will also retain all its juiciness after cooking. We actually soak ours in a sweet tea brine.”
Here are a few of Courtland’s essential tips for frying chicken perfectly every time:
A tip for an at home chicken fryer, use the best chicken possible. An air chilled Amish chicken is my preference, and I've found the skin gets extra crispy and doesn't slide away from the meat. You also have a more intense chicken flavor with a pasture raised or free range chicken.
Make the flour just right. We season all purpose flour with a hefty amount of salt, but also cayenne pepper and cornstarch. The cornstarch will help get into all the nooks that the flour missed and get it crispy all the way around. You can also season the flour with things like garlic and onion powder if you feel like it.
Use a probe thermometer to test when the chicken is done, but not over done. You want to carefully pull a piece of thigh or the breast out of the oil and stick the probe into the chicken as close to the bone as possible. If the chicken has reached 160 or 170 degrees F, the chicken is done. Letting it rest for a few minutes will actually help also. If you cook your chicken above 180 or 190 it will begin to get dry and somewhat chewy. For the juiciest and crunchiest fried chicken, don't overcook it.