Honey-Peppered Buttermilk-Fried Chicken

Ingredients

1 batch Fried Chicken Seasoning (see recipe below)
1 Tablespoon Kosher salt
1/3 cup honey
1 whole lemon, zested
1 quart buttermilk
1 whole chicken, cut into 8 pieces
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 Tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
Peanut oil for frying

FRIED CHICKEN SEASONING Ingredients
1 Tablespoon lemon pepper
1 Tablespoon garlic powder
1/2 Tablespoon sage
1/2 Tablespoon smoked paprika
1/2 Tablespoon thyme
1 Tablespoon dried parsley
 

Directions

Fried Chicken Seasoning:
Mix ingredients

Fried Chicken:
Combine salt, 1/4 cup of the Fried Chicken Seasoning, the honey and the lemon zest in a large plastic container or non-reactive stockpot. Whisk in the buttermilk and stir until salt is dissolved and honey is fully incorporated. Immerse chicken and refrigerate for at least 3 hours and up to 24 hours.

Combine flour, remaining 2 tablespoons Fried Chicken Seasoning and black pepper in a large plastic or doubled brown-paper bag; shake to combine. Drop half of the chicken pieces into flour mixture and shake excess flour from each piece. Repeat coating with remaining chicken pieces. Place coated chicken pieces on a large wire rack, set over a sheet tray and let rest at room temperature for 20 minutes.

Heat 4 inches of oil to 375 degrees in a large cast-iron skillet or Dutch oven. Adjust oven rack to middle position and set a second wire rack over a second baking sheet. Place baking sheet in oven and preheat oven to 200 degrees F. Line 2 large plates with a double layer of paper towels. Fry the chicken in batches, skin-side down, until golden brown, about 8 minutes. Turn pieces over and continue to fry until chicken pieces are golden brown on second side, about 8 to 10 minutes longer. Remove and drain on paper towels.

Using tongs, transfer to oven while you cook the remaining pieces. Return oil to 375 degrees F. and fry remaining pieces. (Note: An even oil temperature is the key to the success of this recipe; a clip-on deep-frying or candy thermometer should be kept in the pot at all times, and the temperature should remain no lower than 325 degrees F.) Serve hot or at room temperature.
 

How to Serve it Up

Square Dinner Plate
Compartment Plate
Dinner Plate