We would like to say that although there are KFCs that have popped up all over parts of Europe, that is not real fried chicken. We tried to tell two Parisian friends that bit of undeniable truth during their vacation here in Los Angeles. To all the Frenchies, and any other international friends, who believe the Colonel’s bird is the only ticket, prepare to be mystified and satisfied when someone makes the real thing for you. What if they make a couple other Southern favorites for you? Then truly be ready for an experience! (We are on a below the Mason Dixon line kick this week!) We love Southern food. The joy of fried okra, fried green tomatoes and fried catfish rings deep in our hearts and bellies–and fried chicken too. When there are guests in town who are looking an American experience, why not start with one of the best examples. Food.
Excuse us. We’re all still licking our fingers. Just bear with us a minute…
OK, we’re back. Maybe you’re asking where’s the cornbread? We’re saying the same thing! Believe it or not Ripley, but it was on the table. We just forgot to snap a picture. And there was dessert too! Maybe not a traditional dish, but scrumptious nonetheless. So scrumptious that we’ll feature it in its own post later this week. This meal was a little Southern delight for not only us, but also our guests. Comforting, nostaglic and satisfying–classics with our own twist. Home is not only where the heart is but the kitchen as well.
Herbed Fried Chicken – Serves 8 to 10
32-40 chicken wings and drumettes
3 eggs, beaten
1 cup milk
2 cups flour
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 cup baking powder
1 tablespoon paprika
1 tablespoon salt
2 tablespoons garlic powder
1 1/2 tablespoon cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon mint, minced
2 teaspoons oregano
3 tablespoons parsley, minced
5 tablespoons poultry seasoning
Zest of 1 lemon, minced
Oil (Canola, Peanut, Vegetable–anything with a high smoking point)
1. Heat oil in a deep fryer or deep skillet.
2. As oil heats, mix all spices, herbs and zest in a small bowl. Mix flour with baking powder and cornstarch. Add half of spices to flour mixture and mix well. Set aside.
3. Combine eggs and milk in a small bowl. Beat well. Set aside.
4. Use remaining spice mixture to season all chicken well. Dip into egg mixture and roll in seasoned flour. Tap off excess.
5. Slowly lower into hot oil, and fry until just browned, approximately 5-7 minutes, turning frequently. Drain on paper towels. Repeat process in small batches.
Mashed Sweet Potatoes – Serves 6 to 8
3 large sweet potatoes, cooked and peeled
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 – 1/2 cup milk or cream, slightly warmed
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon cardamom
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 cup brown sugar
Zest of 1 orange, minced
1. Mash peeled potatoes until well broken up. (Or use an electric mixer.)
2. Mix cinnamon, cayenne, cardamom, zest and sugar. Set aside.
3. Add butter, milk or cream, vanilla and maple syrup to potatoes. Mix well.
4. Add cinnamon sugar mixture until incorporated and smooth. Salt to taste.
Garlic Green Beans – Serves 4 to 6
1 pound green beans
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 tablespoons butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon rosemary, chopped
Zest of 1 lemon
1. Add butter, olive oil, garlic , lemon zest and rosemary to a large sauce pan. Turn on very low heat and allow to melt. Stir well until melted, then take off heat.
2. In a pot of boiling water, drop in green beans and cook until bright green and crisp, approximately 3-5 minutes. Drain.
3. Toss beans in garlic butter. Salt to taste.
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