My deep fat fryer is not something that I tend to have to hand in the kitchen – I’d rather have the room for prepping food and of course my wonderful rotisserie machine. So I store it away and get it out when I’m up for doing a series of meals requiring some kind of deep frying – fish and chips, calamari and the like.
So before temporarily retiring it for another month or so, I decided to try and crack southern fried chicken. As you can imagine, there are absolutely loads of recipes available on the internet…so, rather than go for one of these, I hunted down recipes that claim to be the ‘top secret’ Kentucky Fried Chicken recipe used by Colonel Sanders himself.
It appears these days not to be so secret – allegedly, a nephew of the colonel discovered a handwritten recipe in a scrapbook owned by his second wife…and decided to share it with the world. Since then, all sorts of bloggers and food media have been sharing the recipe of 11 herbs and spices. It’s actually a pretty simple recipe to follow (find the one I used here) , just a little laborious and rather startling pulling all the herbs and spices together. These are:
- 2/3 tablespoon salt
- 1/2 tablespoon dried thyme leaves
- 1/2 tablespoon dried basil leaves
- 1/3 tablespoon dried oregano leaves
- 1 tablespoon celery salt
- 1 tablespoon ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon dried mustard
- 4 tablespoons paprika
- 2 tablespoons garlic salt
- 1 tablespoon ground ginger
- 3 tablespoons ground white pepper
No Kentucky Fried Chicken meal is complete without all the sides.
So I also decided to try out getting as close to the classic KFC coleslaw (recipe here) along with fries, barbecue beans and two types of homemade tomato sauce.
Well I was certainly pleased with the overall look of the meal – and all the sides were delicious. The coleslaw in particular was an extremely good match to that found in your KFC box of goodies. My homemade tomato sauces were great fun to make, and the barbecue beans were pretty simple to replicate. I’ll share these recipes at some point as I see no reason why you wouldn’t want to try homemade versions.
The chicken itself worked really well – it both looked and tasted the part. But, although we picked up on a bit of a salt hit while eating it…we weren’t prepared for the raging thirsts later on. We should have known really as, looking at the list of herbs and spices, there’s a huge amount of salt in there. 2/3 tablespoon salt, 1 tablespoon celery salt and 2 tablespoons of garlic salt – that’s almost 4 tablespoons of salt!!
Strangely, that hasn’t put me off making it again – it was great fun to make, great fun to serve…and great fun to eat. But I will definitely be reducing quantities of many of the herbs and spices. I’ve eaten KFC before and don’t remember that level of saltiness…so, I do wonder whether this now revealed ‘top secret’ is in fact the real deal.