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  • Writer's pictureJo Marsden

Takeaway Style Buttermilk Fried Chicken Tenders

I do love a good chicken tender, and for weeks I've been working on the best way to replicate the true takeaway style taste without a pressure fryer, which, in pretty much any normal home isn't going to be practical! And, I think I've gotten pretty close. If you love fried chicken give these a go, you can use the same method for thighs, wings, breasts or drums, trust me it tastes insane!

The key to good fried chicken that's crispy on the outside and soft and juicy on the inside is, from my perspective:

- Chicken, Try to use free-range and organic where you can, you can taste the difference! Make sure to properly trim the fat and any sinus from the tenders.

- Marinade, Marinating the chicken in Buttermilk and Pickle juice tenderises the chicken and helps the breading stick to the chicken properly, along with adding a great flavour. You don't want to over-marinate however, as the chicken will start to break down, so go for around 1-2 hours, min 30 mins.

- Breading, Make sure the chicken is at room temperature before breading, this helps the breading to stick and the chicken to fry faster and more evenly. When ready, ensure the chicken is coated really well in the seasoned flour. Give it a little shake and a tap to remove excess breading before frying.

- Frying, Fry the chicken at 190c for 6-8 mins or until it reaches an internal temp of 73c. Don't over-fry the chicken or you will burn the breading and don't overcrowd the fryer, as you want to give the chicken some space to fry.

- MSG, Controversial I know! However, using MSG in your Marinade and Breading will give you that takeaway style flavour, and it tastes amazing! If you're totally against it, add a little more salt, but personally, I'd add the MSG, the flavour is insane.

Ingredients for the Marinade:

  1. Chicken, Tenders / Wings / Breast / Drums / Thighs etc

  2. Buttermilk

  3. Pickle Juice

  4. Rock Salt

  5. Black Pepper

  6. Knorr Aromat / MSG Powder

Ingredients for the Breading:

  1. Plain Flour

  2. 2tsp Smoked Paprika

  3. 2tsp Cayne Pepper

  4. 1tsp Garlic Powder

  5. 1tsp Onion Powder

  6. 2-3tsp Knorr Aromat / MSG Powder

  7. Rock Salt

  8. Black Pepper

Method for the Marinade:

Take your chicken and trim off any excess fat or sinus, pop these into a large bowl and cover liberally in buttermilk. You want to make sure the chicken is all really well covered. Season well with rock salt and black pepper, add a little pickle juice and 1-2tsp of MSG / Knorr Aromatt. Stir up well, cover and place in the fridge for 1-2 hours, giving it a good shake every so often.

Method for the Breading and Frying:

Take your chicken (still in its marinade) out of the fridge and allow it to come up to room temperature. Whilst this is happening, turn your fryer on, or heat some veg/sunflower oil to 190c and set up your breading station. For this you need a large deep tray, fill this with plain flour and then add to this the following seasonings:

  • 2tsp Smoked Paprika

  • 2tsp Cayne Pepper

  • 1tsp Garlic Powder

  • 1tsp Onion Powder

  • 2-3tsp Knorr Aromat / MSG Powder

  • A good few twists of Rock Salt

  • A good few twists of Black Pepper

Once your chicken is at roughly room temperature, take each piece carefully out of the buttermilk, MSG and pickle marinade and allow any excess marinade to drip off. Pop into the seasoned flour and coat well with your other hand. Make sure the chicken is completely coated, and then tap at the end to remove any excess seasoned flour. Set aside for a minute or so, then fry at 190c.

Fry for around 6-8 mins or until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 73c. Don't over-fry the chicken or you will burn the breading and don't overcrowd the fryer as you want to give the chicken some space to fry. Sprinkle with a little salt and serve immediately.

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