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This is originally Gram's recipe, but it is Mom I remember doing it most-frying up a big chicken in two pans then chilling it down in the fridge and putting it in a picnic basket, packed inside a couple of giant zip-top bags. We'd be all set for a holiday picnic, hours on the beach at Lake Michigan, or a day trip to the Chicago museums with the whole family.

  • 1 large cut up frying chicken (8 pieces)
  • 2 Cups vegetable oil (double if using two pans)
  • 1 Cup flour

Heat vegetable oil over medium heat. We prefer two pans with about 1/2 inch oil in each pan, because it takes half an hour to properly cook the chicken, and 4 pieces fit perfectly in one large pan. Wash the chicken, pat totally dry. Season heavily on both sides with 4/S, CAJUN SEASONING and GRANULATED GARLIC, then dredge in flour. Dredging means coating thoroughly, dragging the piece through the flour, shaking it off, turning it over and doing it again. Leave the pieces in the flour until ready to cook. The oil should be hot but not overly hot or smoking. This is the key to perfect fried chicken-a bubbling simmer rather than a rolling boil-less spattering and much less smell in the house, and really juicy chicken. Keep the heat on medium (between 4 and 5 on an electric stove). Use a candy thermometer if you are unsure-250° is perfect.

Add a small piece first-it is easy to turn the heat down a bit if the first wing or leg browns too quickly. The piece should bubble when added. If it doesn't, the oil isn't hot enough, so turn it up a bit and wait before adding more chicken. That's about it-add two small pieces and two big ones to each pan (be sure not to crowd). Shake gently once in awhile and turn every 5 minutes or so. The oil will tend to get hotter as the chicken pieces cook, so adjust the heat a bit up and down as necessary. The smallest wing will be done in 20 minutes or so; legs 25 minutes; thighs and breasts 30 minutes, although really big breasts may need 35-40 and a few minutes with their rib-end standing up to brown the edges. It is easy if you hang around the kitchen and give the chicken the little bit of hovering it needs.

When removing the chicken from the pan, be careful, the oil is hot, and place on a plate covered with paper toweling. Eat hot, or if you can stand it, refrigerate and serve later at a picnic.

Prep. time: 3 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Serves: 4

4S Special Seasoned Sea Salt 4.0 oz. 1/2 cup jar
Cajun Style Seasoning 2.1 oz. 1/2 cup jar
Garlic Powder Granulated 2.9 oz. 1/2 cup jar

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