A couple of nights ago, I felt like some of the Colonels finger lickin’ chicken. I think it was the weather cooling down that made this crisp hot chicken with a salty golden crust so perfectly appealing – oh yes! dinner was going to be one fine looking bird tonight and that for sure would make my husband very happy.
Like many people, I consider myself somewhat of a connoisseur on fried chicken. The outside needs to glisten and crust up with pride providing both texture and an explosion of taste. Yet it has another duty too; to protect the succulence inside, only to be revealed as your teeth rip in to it.
However, don’t think I forgot you as I put this together. With many requests to keep this healthy and simple, I decided to throw you in to the frying pan but not the fryer. This chicken is cooked with minimal oil on the frying pan to get that golden brown coat we all love but is then finished in the oven. That is why served this with a salad and not fries (though you could bake those too).
This dish is great and lacks the compromise of taste that one often experiences with healthier twists on calorie dense dishes. It is also a myth buster that for a fried chicken to taste juicy and crisp, it needs to be lunged in to a pool of hot oil.
4 chicken thighs with skin and bone
1 tbsp. jerk seasoning
1 tsp. Salt (unless the jerk has enough salt)
1 tsp. black pepper
• Reserve a pinch for serving
8oz plain flour
8oz breadcrumbs combined with a pinch of thyme, black pepper and chili flakes
2 eggs, combined with a fork
¼ cup of oil
1) Heat the oven to 450 degrees
2) Rub the dry chicken seasoning over the chicken and set aside for as long as you can (at least 1 hour)
3) Heat a wide sauté pan with ½ the oil
4) Set out three plates in front of you (preferably near the sauté pan) in the following sequence:
- Plate 1 with the semolina flour
- Plate 2 with the 2 eggs for the egg wash
- Plate 3 with breadcrumbs
5) Dip the chicken in o the semolina flour, lightly pressing it down, then dip in to the egg wash and finally dip and press in to the breadcrumbs
6) Adding no more than 2 thighs at a time, add to the hot frying pan and let it develop a golden crust on each side. Set aside, and repeat with the last 2 thighs (pay attention not to over brown or it will taste burnt)
7) Place on a baking tray lined with parchment paper and cook with a piece of foil placed loosely on top (to avoid the crust from burning). Cook for another 20 minutes and check that the chicken is done by inserting a knife at the thickest part near the bone – if the juices run clear, remove from the oven
8) Give the chicken a final sprinkle of the reserved chicken seasoning and serve hot