Fried chicken has become one of those trendy food items in New York, if not elsewhere. The Accidental Locavore isn’t sure why. Do you think it’s because it’s comfort food? Or that it’s relatively inexpensive (even at high-end restaurants)? Today it’s time to put a stop to the endless arguments as to who makes it best.
The chicken I had was a deep, rich mahogany in color. The well-seasoned crust had a great crispy crunch and the chicken within was tender and juicy, even the white meat (a miracle under any circumstance). My husband, who was skeptical about a fried chicken dinner (“I don’t even like fried chicken”) ended up quickly downing four pieces, raving about it all the way home.
It’s interesting to have something that is usually made to a relatively decent standard elevated to an almost unattainable level. Last summer the Locavore had some fish & chips in a wonderful, unexpected restaurant in New Jersey that will be the standard that all other fish & chips will be held up to. This chicken will serve as the same benchmark.
Now that you’re undoubtedly drooling, you’ll want to know where you can grab a leg or two. Test my knowledge of the nuances of fried chicken, add it to your list of must-haves, show-off to your friends, right? Well here’s the bad news (for you anyway). You can’t. Turns out that my friend Zhu Zhu is a genius at making fried chicken. And he does it with a kitchen that’s about the size of your bathtub.
We were invited the other evening for a buttermilk-themed evening: fried chicken, buttermilk biscuits, salad with buttermilk dressing and, originally planned, buttermilk ice cream. Everything was delicious and although I’ve been raving about the chicken, the buttermilk biscuits were everything they should be — warm, light, flaky and delicious!
And if that wasn’t enough, there was a floor show for dessert. The ice cream was prepared table-side, using a prepared base and dry ice. It made for quite a presentation and the mint chip was tasty if a little strange, the dry ice giving it a slight carbonation. If you, like my husband, love an ice cream soda, you should give making ice cream this way a try. In the meantime, the Locavore is eagerly awaiting the next fried chicken dinner!
And thanks to the lovely BJ for the great photos!