Honey Butter Fried Chicken

Joshua Kulp and Christine Cikowski
Servings: 8
2+ hr

Spread salty-sweet honey butter alongside crispy chicken for the ultimate condiment.

  • Ingredients
  • step-by-step directions
Honey Butter Fried Chicken
  • BRINE:
  • 3/4 cup Coarse Kosher Salt; preferably Diamond Crystal
  • 1/2 cup Granulated Sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon Chile Flake
  • Peel of one Lemon
  • Peel of one Orange
  • 1 Gallon Water
  • 2 Boneless Skin-on Breasts
  • 2 Boneless Skin-on Thighs
  • 2 Drumsticks
  • Chicken Brine to cover
  • 3 1/2 cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/2 cup Rice Flour
  • 3 teaspoons Freshly Ground Black Pepper
  • 3 1/2 teaspoons Garlic Powder
  • 2 teaspoons Onion Powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
  • 3 teaspoons Coarse Kosher Salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Smoked Paprika; Pimenton
  • 1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 8 Pieces of Brined Chicken
  • Chicken Dredge
  • 1 quart Buttermilk
  • Fryer Oil; Canola or Rice Bran to fill a sturdy, high-sided pot with four inches of Oil
  • 1 tablespoon Smoked Paprika; Pimenton
  • Coarse Kosher Salt
  • 2 sticks (16 tablespoons) Butter
  • 4 tablespoons Honey
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon Coarse Kosher Salt
  • For Brine: Combine above ingredients in a large pot and heat over medium heat and stir until Sugar and Salt dissolves.  Cool completely.
  • For Chicken: Halve the Breast pieces through the middle, widthwise.  The breast pieces should be roughly the same size as the thigh pieces. Place the Chicken pieces in brine for 12 to 24 hours.  Remove from brine and dry excess moisture with a paper towels.
  • For Chicken Dredge: Mix Flour, Spices and Baking Powder well.  Taste it – it should taste good!
  • To Batter and Fry the Chicken: To batter the Chicken, divide the Chicken Dredge into two deep containers.  Pour the Buttermilk into a third container.
  • Batter each piece of Chicken one at a time.  Dip a Chicken into the first flour container and coat lightly with Chicken Dredge.  Then submerge the Chicken in Buttermilk.  Lift the Chicken out of the Buttermilk, and let drip slightly, and place into second Chicken Dredge container and coat Chicken again.  Be careful to ensure that the Chicken is evenly and fully coated, but do not let the coating become too thick.  Place the battered Chicken onto a plate and proceed with battering the remaining Chicken.  Let the Chicken rest, battered, while you prepare your Oil.  If you are not going to fry the Chicken within an hour, place in refrigerator, uncovered, for up to three hours.  If you refrigerate the battered chicken, be sure to take the chill off by leaving it out at room temperature for a half hour.
  • Preheat your Oil over medium heat.  Using a probe or oil thermometer, carefully bring oil to 340°F.
  • If your pot is small, fry the Chicken in batches.  If you place too much Chicken into the Oil, the temperature will drop too much and the Chicken will become greasy.  Place the Chicken gently into the hot Oil – the temperature will drop.  Carefully adjust the heat to keep the Oil at a constant 315-320°F.  Fry the Chicken until each piece reads at least 165°F at its thickest point.  The drumsticks will take approximately 11-13 minutes.  The Breasts and Thighs will fry for approximately 10 minutes.  When the Chicken is cooked, remove carefully from the Oil and place on a wire rack over a cookie sheet or on paper towels.
  • Dust the top side of the just fried Chicken with a sprinkle of Salt and a sprinkle of Smoked Paprika.  Let rest for one minute, flip the Chicken and dust the other side with Salt and Smoked Paprika.  Serve with room temperature Honey Butter to spread onto the hot fried Chicken.
  • For Honey Butter: Let the Butter come to room temperature.  Combine Butter, Honey, and Salt and whip in a mixer with the whisk attachment until the Butter is well mixed and aerated – about two minutes on medium speed.
  • Taste the Butter, adjust the Salt and Honey to your own preferences.  Store Butter in the refrigerator. Serve at room temperature.
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