If there’s one thing that the Southern United States is famous for is Soul Food. It’s African-American cuisine that has originated from the Southern United States, and it’s often filling, comforting and delicious. And, for me, the ultimate Soul Food, and the most famous, has to be Fried Chicken. While it’s generally well known from a brand of fast food which features a notable Colonel, the best fried chicken can be made at home.
But while the love for fried chicken is universal, what really takes it to another level is serving it with crisp, light, and filling waffles and a rich maple syrup. We’re not always very adventurous over here in the UK with our flavours, and a lot of people think that the mixing of sweet and savoury doesn’t work, but trust me when I say that Fried Chicken and Waffles is one of the most wonderful meals you will ever eat and you will be left feeling full and very, very happy.
One of the prominent ingredients in this recipe is buttermilk. It’s used as a marinade for the chicken to leave it tender and flavoursome, an it’s used in the waffle batter to create a light, fluffy and flavoursome waffle. I’ve also kicked up the maple syrup a notch by adding some bourbon as well. If you’ve never had chicken and waffles, then you’ve got to try this. You will need a waffle maker for this recipe, but they can be picked up on amazon for around £25, and this should make enough for two waffles and two pieces of chicken for each person. Unless you’re really hungry.
Buttermilk Fried Chicken & Waffles with Bourbon Maple SyrupPrint Recipe
- For the chicken:
- 8 x Chicken Legs (Thighs and Drumsticks)
- 280ml Buttermilk
- 250g Plain Flour
- 3 tsp Salt
- 3 tsp Black Pepper
- 3 tsp Garlic Powder
- 3 tsp Onion Powder
- 3 tsp Thyme
- 2 tsp Rosemary
- ½ tsp Chilli Powder
- ½ tsp Cayenne
- For the waffles:
- 450g Plain Flour
- 4 tsp Salt
- 150g Caster Sugar
- 8 Eggs
- 2 tsp Vanilla Extract
- 600ml Buttermilk
- Butter for cooking
- For the syrup:
- 50ml Bourbon
- 250ml Maple Syrup
Add the chicken legs into a large bowl, and pour over the buttermilk and add in a teaspoon each of salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, thyme and rosemary. Mix it all together well, cover the bowl with cling film and place in the fridge to marinade for a minimum of 2 hours, although overnight for around 8 to 12 hours is preferable.
To make your waffle batter, add flour, salt, caster sugar and baking powder to a large bowl and mix it all together.
Now, make a well in the centre of your dry ingredients and add the buttermilk, eggs and vanilla extract and whisk together well until all the lumps are gone and the batter is smooth. Place to one side.
Take your marinated chicken out of the fridge, and grab a large plate (or bowl) and add the plain flour along with the rest of the dried herbs and spices and combine well.
Take each piece of the chicken and dredge the chicken in the seasoned flour until they're all completely coated, making sure to get in any nooks and crannies. You're best by using one hand to pick up the chicken, and another to roll it in the flour so you have one "wet" hand and one "dry" hand. Leave to one side for ten minutes on a wire rack for the flour to dry a little.
Either using a deep fat fryer, or a very large saucepan or wok, add a few inches of sunflower or vegetable oil and bring up to a temperature of 170°C, and carefully add the chicken to the oil. Take care not to overcrowd the pan and make sure the chicken doesn't stick to each other. Cook the chicken for around ten minutes, turning over halfway if needed. The chicken should have an internal temperature of around 75 to 79°C.
While your chicken is cooking, let's get the waffles going. Following the instructions for your waffle maker, bring it up to heat and melt some butter onto the waffle plates. Add the waffle batter into the waffle maker, taking care not to overfull, and cook for around 8 to 10 minutes until the waffles are golden and crispy.
For your bourbon syrup, add the maple syrup and bourbon into a saucepan over a low heat and gently cook for about five minutes just to cook off a little of the alcohol.
Serve and enjoy!