Gluten-Free Buttermilk Fried Chicken – a perfect street food indulgence!
Wherever you travel to in the world, each country has their own version of fried chicken; from super spicy to extra crunchy, but very few offer a gluten-free coating when sold as street food or in restaurants. This recipe will give you authentic, crispy fried chicken without leaving your home.
So, where did fried chicken originate from?
Yes, you guessed it…Scotland! Basically, the Scottish immigrants who lived in the southern parts of the U.S. had a tradition of deep-frying chicken. They would share this technique with African slaves who would later – as cooks – introduce it to many southern American homes. Thankfully, they introduced spices and herbs to liven up the flavour and there you have it, it became a popular staple snack/meal in the U.S. since the 1700s.
KFC Fried Chicken
Eventually, Colonel Saunders (the KFC founder) perfected the KFC crust and mastered the pressure frying technique; cooking the chicken in half the time it normally takes – qualifying it as fast food.
Some important steps for the perfect fried chicken:
Brining the chicken in the buttermilk
Soaking the chicken pieces in buttermilk and the seasoned spice mixture for at least 6 hours acts as a brine that tenderises, keeps the meat juicy, enhances the flavour and allows the breadcrumbs to stick well to the chicken.
Crumbing the chicken correctly
Follow the four dipping steps religiously to crumb the chicken pieces successfully:
- FIRST STEP: Buttermilk mixture
- SECOND STEP: Crumbing mixture
- THIRD STEP: Buttermilk mixture again. Double-dipping the chicken in the buttermilk mixture gives it that extra crispiness.
- FOURTH STEP: Gluten-Free breadcrumbs mixture
Frying it at the right temperature
If you have a food thermometer, use it to test your cooking oil for the ideal deep-frying temperature of 170°C/325°F. Otherwise, test the oil using a bread cube; if it fries golden within 30 seconds, the oil is ready for frying.
Keeping the chicken crispy
Most fried foods are normally drained on paper towels once the frying is complete, but a good tip is to drain them directly on a wire mesh with a tray underneath. They really do stay much crispier as any excess oil drips away instead of the paper towels smothering the chicken and making the crust soggy.
Gluten-Free Buttermilk Fried Chicken
- Deep-frying pan
- 12 pieces chicken (wings, drumsticks, thigh-bone-in)
- 300 g store-bought or homemade gluten-free breadcrumbs
- 500 ml buttermilk
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1 tsp white pepper
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- ½ tsp cayenne pepper
- ½ tsp dried rosemary
- ½ tsp dried oregano
- ½ tsp dried thyme
- ½ tsp dried sage
Chicken Crumbing Mixture
- 500 g cornflour Known as cornflour in the UK and corn or maize starch in the USA
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- ½ tsp smoked paprika
- ½ tsp cayenne pepper
- ½ tsp onion powder
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- ½ tsp white pepper
- 1 litre sunflower oil
- Mix the buttermilk with all the brine's seasoning and spices.
- Add the chicken pieces to the buttermilk brine and refrigerate for 6 hours.
Chicken Crumbing Preparation
- In a medium bowl, mix the cornflour with all the crumbing mixture's seasoning and spices. Set aside.
- In another medium bowl, add the gluten-free breadcrumbs. Set aside.
Crumbing the Chicken
- Bring the chicken in the buttermilk brine out from the refrigerator.
- Crumbing one chicken piece at a time, remove it from the buttermilk brine, allowing the excess brine to drip off.
- Dip the chicken piece into the crumbing mixture. Shake off the excess mixture.
- Return the chicken piece back to the buttermilk mixture for an extra dip.
- Finally, dip the chicken piece in the gluten-free breadcrumbs.
- Place the completed crumbed chicken piece on a large clean plate or tray, while continuing with the remaining chicken. At this stage, they can be chilled to be fried nearer meal time.
Deep-frying the Chicken
- Preheat the oil to 170°C/325°F in a deep-frying pan. Use a thermometer to check the temperature or fry a small piece of bread. The oil is ready if it fries golden in 30 seconds.
- Fry 3 to 4 pieces of chicken at one time to avoid over-crowding the pan, or the oil temperature will lower and cook the chicken unevenly.
- Once the chicken has reached a golden, crisp exterior, remove and drain on the wire mesh tray while continuing to cook the rest of the chicken. Frying times vary. Allow 5 minutes for breasts; 8 minutes for wings; 10 minutes for drumsticks or thighs.
- Sprinkle the cooked chicken pieces with extra salt and pepper. Do this straight away. The seasoning adheres better to the crispy, warm crust.
- Serve warm or cold with fresh sage leaves, lemon pieces.
- Keeps for 3 days chilled
- Suitable to freeze uncooked after crumbing each chicken pieces