When I was a kid my mom used to make fried chicken. It wasn't like the greasy fried chicken that we saw at picnics every summer, but instead a rich and simple dish that she always served with my favorite foods - mashed potatoes, baked corn, and even simple stuffing. As I got older, this being my 'welcome home' meal after being away at college or work, and it's still one of my very favorite comfort foods.
Now that I'm a mom myself, I love to cook chicken this way because of it's very simplicity. It tastes like you've bitten into a roasted chicken, but without the hours of basting or the heat of an oven. It's faster to prep because there's no egg or buttermilk wash, no crumbs to season or cereal to crunch, and no slippery parts to dip. Because this dish is part-simmered and part-fried, it comes together fairly quickly - and while it bubbles away on the stove, you can be assembling your potato salad or husking corn or whatever else you need to do.
Added bonus: Since this chicken is fried in natural ingredients, there's nothing false about it - and it's pretty healthy, too, because you control the amount of fat inside.
Here's how to make your own World's Easiest Fried Chicken:
- chicken parts, whatever you like. I'm partial to the white meat of the breasts, myself, but any piece will work, even the boneless variety.
- freshly ground pepper
- 1+ c. of water
- a generous sprinkling of poultry seasoning for each piece of chicken
- 3-4 T. butter per 1-2 pounds of chicken
- Cut the skin off of your chicken pieces.
- Place them in a frying pan, bone sides down.
- Sprinkle each piece generously with pepper and poultry seasoning.
- Add a cup of water.
- Cover the chicken and cook over medium heat until the water is nearly gone and the chicken is nearly cooked. The time this takes depends on the size of your chicken pieces.
- When the pan is nearly dry, add the butter to the middle and flip the pieces over so that the meatiest sides are down in the butter.
- Reduce heat to medium low and continue to cook until the chicken is golden brown and cooked through.
- Bonus: If you want to make gravy, when the butter is nearly cooked away, add more water or chicken broth back into the pan and stir to remove the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Slowly stir in your slurry and continue to stir until the desired thickness. This makes a super rich and yummy gravy!
- When you first season the chicken, it will look pretty plain - but when it's done, voila! You get this! Who would want to eat some of that? Serve with your favorite fried chicken sides.
What's your favorite way to eat fried chicken?