Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Fried Chicken

In our town we have something called cheap chicken Mondays. In other words, Fried chicken goes on sale on Mondays and a whole fried chicken is a bargain. Paul and I rarely take advantage of this but yesterday we did. Thus the reason behind today's post. I'm also working on the proposal for my third St. Augustine series and will probably be putting one of these recipes together for the story.

Enjoy these various recipes
Wash and cut up a young chicken, wipe it dry, season with salt and pepper, dredge it with flour, or dip each piece in beaten egg and then in cracker crumbs. Have in a frying pan, one ounce each of butter and sweet lard, made boiling hot. Lay in the chicken and fry brown on both sides. Take up, drain them, and set aside in a covered dish. Stir into the gravy left, if not too much, a large tablespoonful of flour, make it smooth, add a cup of cream or milk, season with salt and pepper, boil up and pour over the chicken. Some like chopped parsley added to the gravy. Serve hot.
If the chicken is old, put into a stew pan with a little water, and simmer gently till tender; season with salt and pepper, dip in flour or cracker crumb and egg, and fry as above. Use the broth the chicken was cooked in to make the gravy instead of the cream or milk, or use an equal quantity of both.
Source: The White House Cook Book ©1889

This next recipe comes from Whitehead's Family Cook Book ©1891 and gives more than just the recipe. It opens the section with information that no hotel should be without fried chicken and a chicken less hotel remains closed. Here's the recipe:
But the houses that make reputation out of the excellence of their fried chicken put on a touch above that, and a more expensive one for it uses up eggs, but as eggs are comparatively cheap in the chicken region they find it to their interest. The way they do is to dip the pieces of chicken in egg and then in flour, or more literally, they beat two dozen eggs enough to mix them well and pour them into a panful of cut up chicken, add salt and white pepper enough to season well, tumble the pieces about till well egged over, then drop them into a pan of flour and take them, well coated, into the kettle of hot lard or pork fat, frying only a few pieces at a time and taking them up when of a rich yellowb: own color, draining on a sieve for a minute or two and sending to table.

Fried Chicken.
Cut the chicken into small pieces, steam until tender, dip in the beaten yolk of an egg, roll in flour and fry until a nice brown, in butter and lard; season with salt and pepper to taste.
Fried Chicken.
Cut up a chicken as you would for fricassee, steam until tender, dip in beaten egg, roll in flour or crumbs and fry until nicely browned; season with salt and pepper, turn often, when done a‘d to the gravy half a cupful of cream. M. E.
Fried Chicken.
Take a young chicken, cut it up, place two tablespoonfuls of butter and two of lard in a kettle, let it get hot, add the chicken, season with pepper and salt, let it cook slowly, stirring often; when done remove the chicken, pour sufficient milk into the kettle to make a gravy with a little flour.
Source: Second Edition of the Ellis Cook Book ©1898

I love that this one calls for a short brining.
Fried Chicken.
Clean and joint, then soak in salt water for two hours. Put in frying-pan equal parts of lard and butter—in all enough to cover the chicken. Roll each piece in flour, or dip in beaten egg, then roll in cracker crumbs, and drop into the boiling fat. Fry until browned on both sides. Serve on flat platter garnished with sprigs of parsley. Pour most of the fat from the frying-pan, thicken the remainder with browned flour, and add to it a cupful of boiling water or milk; serve in gravy-boat.
Source: Good Housekeeping ©1898


  1. You are making me hungry! I love fried chicken and enjoy making gravy but don't actually eat it. You have inspired me to fry chicken this week. Add mashed potatoes, green beans and homemade biscuits with chocolate cake for dessert and of course, since I am a Virginian, sweet tea is a must.

  2. Yes, I agree Kathy, sweet tea is a must. Enjoy!