Hugh's Fried Chicken with Stewed Pickled Tomatoes
"I love fried chicken. When we redesigned our home kitchen I installed a pretty major hood to make fried chicken night a less smoky experience. This means we eat it more often but the smoke detector only goes off once in a while.
My kids love drumsticks and thighs so that’s generally what we cook when it comes to fried chicken. Breasts are just too lean for a great fried dish. The rest of this plate has a great little stew of pickled green tomatoes and fresh red tomatoes, brightened by some chile and mint. It was a recipe written to match up with a Riesling dinner we had at the property of Rebecca Wood, a lauded local potter. That dinner was great and changed me from being a Champagne and fried chicken lover into a rieslling and fried chicken lover. You can still be a canned Pabst chicken lover if you wish. " – Hugh Acheson
4 chicken thighs
1 cup buttermilk
1 tsp. kosher salt
Pinch of cayenne pepper
Pinch of dried mustard powder
1 cup flour
1 tbsp. unsalted butter
1 tbsp. minced shallot
1 cup chopped ripe red heirloom tomatoes
1 cup chopped Pickled Green Tomatoes
1/4 tsp. chopped serrano chile
1 tbs.p chopped fresh mint
1 tbsp. chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 tbsp. Chicken Stock (page 000)
Place chicken and buttermilk in a ziplock bag and seal tightly. Let sit in the fridge for 2 to 24 hours.
Place a large cast iron skillet on medium high heat and add enough shortening to have one inch of depth. Bring the shortening to 325°F and hold it at that temperature.
Combine the salt, cayenne and mustard powder in a small bowl and mix with a fork to combine. Remove chicken from bag and place in a colander over the sink. Discard bag and buttermilk. Place chicken on a sheet pan and dust evenly with the salt mixture.
Place the flour in a large paper shopping bag and then add the chicken. Fold over the top of the bag and Shake well to coat the chicken with the flour. Remove the chicken from the bag, shake off excess flour and set on a clean sheet pan.
Carefully place the chicken, skin side down, into the hot shortening. Cook for ten minutes and then turn over and cook for another ten minutes, holding the temperature at 325°F as consistently as possible. Remove the chicken from the pan and place on a cooling rack to drain any excess oil.
Melt the butter in a medium sized stainless steel frypan over medium high heat. Add the shallot and cook for two minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the red tomatoes and green tomatoes and cook for seven minutes. Add the serrano chile, mint, parsley and the stock and cook for another three minutes. Remove from heat.
Place a 1/2 cup of the tomatoes on each plate and then place a chicken thigh on each pile. Eat.