RECIPE

Buttermilk Fried Chickenwiches

Seasoning and sauces make all the difference in this fabulous fried chicken and best-ever slaw sandwich.

Ingredients

For the oil and vinegar slaw:

  • 3/4 cup white wine or cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup bread-and-butter or dill pickle juice
  • 2 tablespoons yellow mustard
  • 1 teaspoon celery seed
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 2 teaspoons Kosher salt
  • About 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 medium green cabbage, quartered and thinly shredded
  • 1 large carrot, grated
  • 1 small red onion or 1/2 large red onion, chopped or quartered lengthwise, then thinly sliced
  • 2 chili peppers, such as Fresno or jalapeño pepper, seeded and finely chopped

For the special sauce:

  • 2 slices bacon, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar
  • 1/2-2/3 cup grapeseed oil
  • Fine sea salt, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons Sriracha or cayenne pepper hot sauce

For the fried chicken:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic (1/3 palmful)
  • 1 teaspoon granulated onion
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon dried mustard
  • 2 teaspoons black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk
  • Frying oil, such as canola or vegetable oil
  • 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (8 ounces each), halved across to form 6 portions or 6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 6 white or cornmeal-topped sandwich rolls, split and toasted or griddled

Preparation

For the slaw, combine the vinegar, pickle juice, mustard, celery seed, garlic, white and brown sugar and salt in small pot and heat to dissolve the sugar and salt; whisk in the oil. Pour the warm dressing over the cold slaw mixture of cabbage, carrot, red onion and chili peppers. Chill. Note: The slaw can be made 1 day ahead.

For the sauce, brown the bacon in a small pan into crispy bits; remove to cool. In a bowl, whisk together the Dijon, lemon juice, egg yolks and vinegar. Add the oil in very slow stream while whisking, then season with sea salt, to taste. Add the bacon bits and about 2 teaspoons of smoky bacon drippings; stir in the hot sauce to combine. Chill the sauce until ready to use, up to 1 week.


For the chicken, place the flour in a shallow dish and add the dried spices, pepper and salt. Whisk to combine. Pour the buttermilk in a separate dish. Soak the chicken in the buttermilk for as little as an hour or as long as 24 hours. Remove the chicken and shake off the excess buttermilk. Dip in the flour mixture. (Feel free to double dip for extra-crispy chicken!)

Heat about 3 inches of oil in a Dutch oven or counter top fryer to 360-365°F. Fry the chicken in three-piece batches until golden and cooked through, about 8-10 minutes. Keep warm on a wire rack on top of a baking sheet in a warm 275°F oven. When the chicken comes out of the oil, season with a little more salt.

Dress the toasted buns with special sauce and top with a piece of chicken and some slaw salad.

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Rachael Ray