Chef Ashley Christensen of Beasley's Chicken + Honey in Raleigh, NC shares her recipe for old fashioned, Southern fried chicken. Served hot off the stove or chilled in the fridge, this dish is the perfect summertime entree.
Boil the water and add in the sugar and 1 ½ cup of salt, stirring the mixture until it has dissolved to create a brine.
Remove from the heat and combine the brine with some ice in a large, food-safe container.
Place the chicken in the brine, cover, and refrigerate for at least 10 hours and for no longer than 12 hours.
Fill a large, cast-iron skillet half-way with canola oil and heat to 325 degrees.
Fill a paper grocery bag with the flour and the 1 teaspoon of salt, fold the top closed, and shake the bag to combine the ingredients.
Fill a large bowl with the buttermilk. Remove the chicken from the brine and pat the pieces dry.
One by one, dip the chicken pieces into the buttermilk, lift them to drain the excess, then place them in the grocery bag with the flour mixture.
Fold the bag closed and then shake it to thoroughly coat the chicken with the flour mixture, about 30 seconds.
Shake the excess flour from the chicken pieces and fry them in the skillet, adjusting the heat of the oil as necessary to maintain it at 325 degrees, turning each over once, until they are done, about 155 degrees on the interior for white meat and 165 degrees on the interior for dark meat.