Chicken Brining Basics

Chef Jimi Penti shares from his recipe collection: Chicken Brining Basics

Add aromatics such as: 2-4 cloves of garlic (crushed with a knife), bay leaves, a handful thyme, sage, or rosemary sprigs, 2-3 tablespoons uncracked peppercorns, parsley, juice from 1-2 large lemons or oranges, bay leaves, or 1-2 tablespoons of mustard, cumin, or coriander seeds.[2]

Beer and Tyme Brine: Mix 4 12-ounce cans beer (lager, like Budweiser), 1 cup kosher salt, 3/4 cup light-brown sugar, Small handful of thyme sprigs, 5 bay leaves, 1 tablespoon cracked black pepper, and 6 cups ice in a large saucepot.

Rosemary Lemon Brine: 1 small onion, thinly sliced, 4 garlic cloves, smashed with the flat side of a knife, 1 teaspoon vegetable oil, 1 cup Kosher salt, 5 or 6 branches rosemary, 1 liter water, juice of 1 lemon.

KFC Style Chicken Batter

2 eggs, beaten
1 1/2 cups milk
1 cup flour
3/4 cup fine bread crumbs
1 tsp. Knorr chicken bouillon
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. garlic powder (not salt)
1/4 tsp. onion powder (not salt)
1/2 tsp. paprika
1/3 tsp. Bell Seasoning or pinch ground sage
1 tbsp. freshly chopped parsley
2 large cloves garlic, pressed
1/2 tsp. soy sauce
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tbsp. Wondra flour
additional flour for separate pre-coating
5-6 cups non-hydrogenated Crisco or peanut oil
1 frying chicken, cut in pieces

In a small bowl beat the egg, milk, and soy sauce, then stir in 1/2 tsp. Knorr chicken bouillon (save the other 1/2). Put the garlic cloves through a garlic press and add into the egg mixture. Add half of the parsley and 1 tablespoon Wondra flour. Stir well.

In a separate bowl, combine the 1 cup flour and the bread crumbs, and the remaining ingredients. Mix well with a fork.

Put about 1/2 cup additional flour in a separate small bowl. Use this to dip each chicken piece, prior to dipping in the milk and seasonings.

Roll each piece of chicken around until well covered, first in plain flour, then in milk mixture, then in flour/bread crumbs mixture.

Gently lower the chicken pieces into the hot oil and allow to become a golden color (add the bigger pieces first).

Fry the chicken at 360-375F, placing the larger pieces in when the temperature is slightly lower (temperature will drop when pieces are added). Put the smaller pieces in when the temperature is higher, and they will be cooked more quickly. Remove when chicken is golden brown and drain on paper towels.

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