Did you know July 6th is National Fried Chicken Day? Did you know you don't need an excuse to eat really good fried chicken?
I never considered myself much of a "fried chicken guy" until I went on Wonder of the Seas. Sure, I enjoyed fried chicken, but outside of Nashville, it was tough to find really good fried chicken.
Then I ate at the Mason Jar Southern Restaurant & Bar.
Maybe it was the country music band playing in the bar, or the PB&J old fashioned (I'd love to get a recipe for that, by the way) that I had a few sips of first, but the Meemaw’s Fried Chicken was really darn good.
The chicken fell apart quite easily at the first tug, so there was no wrestling with a tough bird this time around.
Even better was the same fried chicken they put on the "Nashville Hot" Crispy Chicken Sandwich.
We ended up dining at Mason Jar at least 4 different times (not counting a snack at the bar late at night), and I'm fairly certain every order I made had fried chicken as part of the recipe.
Then I tried Meemaw’s Fried Chicken N’ Waffles, which is a golden waffle topped with fried chicken and sweet maple syrup. It's an ideal mix between sweet and savory flavors. Suddenly, I began to question a lot of foods I previously thought I wasn't a huge fan of.
I can't sail on Wonder of the Seas every week (or so my wife tells me), but Royal Caribbean has shared a copy of Meemaw’s Fried Chicken so anyone can make it at home. A copy of Garth Brooks' "Friends in low places" not included.
Here's how to make the fried chicken at home inbetween Wonder of the Seas cruises.
Meemaw’s Fried Chicken Recipe
- 2 whole chickens (3-3.5 lbs each) – broken down 8 pieces (2 legs, 2 thighs, 4 breasts)
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- 2 teaspoons of ground black pepper spice
- 1 teaspoon of Cajun seasoning
- 1 teaspoon of your favorite spice rub (we use our Royal secret recipe seasoning)
- 3 teaspoons of granulated garlic powder
- 1 ¾ cups of buttermilk
- 5 teaspoons of your favorite hot sauce
- 1 medium egg
- ¾ cup of flour
- ¾ cup of corn starch
- ½ teaspoon of baking powder
- ½ teaspoon of salt
- ¼ teaspoon of granulated onion powder
- ½ teaspoon of granulated garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon of ground black pepper
- ⅛ teaspoon of Cayenne pepper
- ¼ teaspoon of oregano
- ¼ teaspoon of dry mustard
Marinate the Chicken
- In a container, mix salt, pepper, granulated garlic, Cajun seasoning, spice rub of your choice, buttermilk, hot sauce and egg.
- Add chicken pieces to the marinade, cover and refrigerate for a minimum of 3 hours (6 hours is suggested).
Coat the Chicken
- In a separate container, mix the chicken coating by adding the flour, corn starch, baking powder, salt, granulated onion powder, granulated garlic powder ground black pepper, Cayenne pepper, oregano, dry mustard.
- Remove the marinated chicken from the refrigerator and uncover.
- Dredge each piece of chicken individually in the coating mixture, shaking any excess mixture and put aside (we’ll do this a second time).
- Let the chicken rest for about 10-15 minutes on a cooling rack – this will help the coating stay on better (we suggest putting sheet pans under the rack to help with cleaning up).
- Dredge each piece of chicken individually in the mixture for a second time. Shake off excess mixture.
Fry the Chicken
- Heat oil in a deep fryer at 284 degrees F (140 degrees C).
- Once temperature is reached, carefully place chicken in the deep fryer for 15-20 minutes until golden brown and internal
temperature is 165 degrees F (74 degrees C).
- Remove chicken from deep fryer and transfer to a cooling rack over a sheet pan.
- Let fried chicken sit for at least 10 minutes before serving.
- Plate, serve and enjoy!
Doesn't the fried chicken look amazing? It tastes even better!
Next time you've got family coming over, wow them with this fried chicken recipe. Then tell them they should come on a cruise with you so you can compare this to the real thing on Wonder of the Seas. You know, in the name of "research".