Ad Hoc Fried Chicken

While I have yet to experience Thomas Keller’s cooking in person, I was thrilled that JP gave me Ad Hoc at Home for Christmas.  And now that I’ve officially cooked the Buttermilk Fried Chicken, my love of this book is justified.

Cookbook: Ad Hoc at Home, Thomas Keller

Week: 15 of 52

TK is known for his intricate recipes but they are worth it.  In the case of Buttermilk Fried Chicken, you start about 15 hours before cooking, by creating the brine.  The poultry brine incorporates salt, peppercorns, honey, parsley, thyme, bay leaves, garlic, and most importantly, lemons.  Boil this to dissolve all of the salt, let it sit and get to room temp or colder, add the chicken and refrigerate.

After brining for 12 hours, rinse the chicken in cold water, and let it rest until the chicken is at room temperature.  This will help the chicken cook evenly when fried.

Meanwhile, mix up the coating of flour, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne, paprika, salt, and pepper.  Split this between two bowls and add a third bowl of buttermilk seasoned with salt & pepper. Set up a staging area: chicken, dry mixture, buttermilk, dry mixture, parchment-lined baking sheet. The chicken is coated in the dry mixture, then buttermilk, and then another layer of dry mixture before frying.

Then it just has to be fried!  Dark meat cooks for about 12 minutes at 320 degrees and white meat for about 8 minutes at 340.

The result? Ridiculously crispy, juicy, tasty fried chicken.  I would eat this anytime, anywhere.

I served this to JP and our friends Chris & Andrea along with collard greens, macaroni & cheese, and cornbread.  Chris is making the first ever cameo on Finding Food.

And because this was a clearly southern meal, we had Red Velvet cupcakes for dessert.


  • Lemon
  • Garlic
  • Honey
  • Parsley
  • Thyme
  • Bay Leaf
  • Salt
  • Black Peppercorns
  • Chicken
  • Flour
  • Garlic Powder
  • Onion Powder
  • Cayenne Pepper
  • Paprika
  • Buttermilk
  • Oil for frying

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