- 2 tbsp granulated sea salt
- 1.4 kg chicken, cut into 8 pieces
- 500 gm lard or beef suet
- 250 ml (1 cup) Hartsyard hot sauce (see <b><u><a href='/recipes/recipe-search/chefs-recipes/2015/7/hartsyard-hot-sauce/'>recipe</a></u></b>)
- 250 ml (1 cup) buttermilk
- 300 gm (2 cups) self-raising flour
- 3 tbsp Old Bay Seasoning (see note)
- 1 tbsp cayenne pepper
- 1 tbsp coarsely ground black pepper
- 1 tbsp sweet paprika
- 1 tbsp mustard powder
- 2 tsp dried thyme
- 1Bring 1 litre water to the simmer in a 2-litre stockpot. Add salt and stir until dissolved. Remove from heat and pour into a non-reactive container. Cool to room temperature, then refrigerate until completely cold. Submerge chicken pieces in brine, cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 4 hours.
- 2For marinade, in a large bowl, combine hot sauce and buttermilk. Remove chicken from brine and pat dry thoroughly with paper towels. Place chicken in marinade and toss until thoroughly coated. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours.
- 3For crumbing mix, mix all ingredients in a large bowl until thoroughly combined. Have the mixture at hand when you're ready to fry up the chicken.
- 4In a cast-iron frying pan large enough to fit the chicken pieces comfortably, melt the lard or suet over medium-low heat. When it starts to shimmer, increase the heat to medium. Remove chicken from marinade, then roll in the crumbing mix to coat. Place back in the marinade, then crumbing mix again, then slowly place the chicken in the lard a piece at a time – they should start sizzling immediately. Keeping a close eye on the pan and the browning, keep frying until golden on one side. Turn chicken over and keep frying until a crust has formed and the colour is uniform. The whole frying process should take about 12 minutes. Drain on paper towels and serve immediately.
Note "Old Bay Seasoning is an American herb and spice mix, primarily used in Southern US cuisine," says Llewellyn. "I think McCormick must put fairy dust in theirs - it's that good!" It's available from usafoods.com.au. This recipe is from Fried Chicken & Friends ($49.99, hbk) by Gregory Llewellyn and Naomi Hart, published by Murdoch Books and has been reproduced with minor GT style changes.