Recipes for fried chicken range from different styles and are often based on the region of the country that the cook lives in. Fried chicken recipes that are prepared in the northwest may differ greatly from that in the southeastern or deep southern states. The mixture of herbs and spices along with the cooking techniques themselves make the topic of how to fry chicken and what must or must not be included a fascinating one. Simply put, fried chicken consists of cut up pieces of chicken coated with flour, crackers or other items before being cooked in vegetable oil before being eaten.
All cooks, regardless of the regional area they are from, will first make certain that the chicken they are cooking is rinsed under cold water before being cooked. This is a good time to remove any bits of fat that may be under the skin. Northern cooks coat the chicken with a mixture of flour, salt, pepper, paprika before frying in a large skillet. One of the keys to golden fried chicken is to keep turning the pieces over so that the coating browns nicely. Some fried chicken recipes call for marjoram, poultry seasoning, garlic salt or parsley flakes in the flour; this is a choice of personal preference. Fried chicken, unless it is deep fried, will take an hour to cook, using a skillet over medium heat for the first ten or so minutes until the chicken has browned nicely, then the heat is reduced to low and the chicken is turned every so often.
Cooks in the northernmost parts of Maine often use bread crumb coatings in their recipes for fried chicken. The southern cooks seem to prefer a batter based on corn meal, eggs and a hint of cream, than the chicken is fried. Some cooks choose to keep the chicken covered for the first thirty minutes, then uncovered the rest of the time. Other fried chicken recipes call for the browning to be done first before the chicken in a moderate oven for the rest of the time.
Another type of recipe is often confused with chicken, it is chicken fried Fried Chickensteak. This consists of beef that is tenderized and coated with flour or other toppings before being fried. The confusion with chicken fried steak and fried chicken recipes are in the way it is cooked, not that it is a flattened chicken. It is fun to experiment with the recipes and see what topping is your favorite. One of the more unique ones is the addition of cornflakes to the recipe. Grab your fork and bring on the gravy, fried chicken is on the plate for supper or dinner tonight!