Pan Fried Chicken Breast

I am far from mastering the technique at this point, and it is probably far from traditionally prepared, but it is good and pretty easy (although a little messy). I will definitely keep doing this because the flavor is so good and there are a lot of ways this could be enjoyed. You can use pretty much any cut of chicken or even pork with this recipe, but I prefer boneless/skinless chicken breast.

Here’s what you need to do:

  • Mix your seasoned flour: Mix all purpose flour with salt, pepper, a bit of cayenne pepper, a bit of paprika and a small amount of baking powder to help with the crunch (maybe a teaspoon or 2 tops). You can pretty much mix any seasoning you want here, just be careful not to mix in items that may burn or be too large. Breadcrumbs could also be used here if that is desired. Make sure to taste your flour to check that it is seasoned sufficiently (especially on the salt). Place flour mixture on a plate (or anything you can easily throw in the dishwasher after).
  • Pour buttermilk on to a plate or other dish. Can use normal milk if no buttermilk, but it will be thinner and less flavorful.
  • Cut chicken breasts in half (so that they are thinner—you could probably ask the butcher to do this but I usually forget to ask) and pound thin to an even width with a heavy object (about 1/3 inch thick), while covering the chicken with plastic wrap. Season chicken with salt and pepper.
  • Heat up a deep pan on medium-high heat, cast iron or other heavy bottomed if you have it, but stainless steel will work as well. Use a small amount of oil with a high smoking point (peanut, sunflower, vegetable).
  • Completely dredge chicken in seasoned flour mixture, then completely dip into buttermilk, and finally dip into the seasoned flour mixture again, making sure flour is everywhere.
  • Place chicken in pan, not moving until bottom side is golden brown. Flip and cook until brown on other side.
  • Remove from pan and place onto a metal rack or paper toweled tray (to keep crispy), and sprinkle a little salt on top while still hot.

When seasoned correctly, this can seriously be eaten plain. But here are some other options to make it a full meal: place on top of mashed potatoes, with gravy or a pan sauce, with homemade ranch and/or buffalo sauce (equal parts melted butter and Frank’s Hot Sauce), with some sautéed mustard/collard greens/spinach or make a sandwich (w/ the homemade ranch).

Hopefully this doesn’t sound too hard, because it isn’t and if you clean as you go and use dishwasher safe dishes, then it’s not too difficult to clean up either. Enjoy!!

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