Chicken (preferably drumsticks)
Tony Chacheres Cajun Seasoning
Lawrys Seasoning Salt
So heres the recipe. You take chicken, preferably drumsticks and you wash it with cold water. It has to be cold water, because if you use warm water it will start to cook the chicken early and you dont want that. Mix together the flour, and seasonings, and then put the chicken in it. Some people dip the chicken in raw scrambled eggs first, but I dont. Then, you take the vegetable oil, and put it in a frying pan/pot, ect. Put the pan on the stove, and then heat the pan on medium heat. This is important, it has to be medium heat because if you heat it on high, the oil will be too hot and the chicken will just burn. After heating the pan on medium, add the chicken to fry. This is how the trained fried chicken cooker knows when to turn it over (holds up her hands for emphasis): you have to LISTEN, LISTEN, you cannot see when to turn it over. You have to listen. Youll hear the frying noises, and when they quiet down, youll hear it subside. Thats when you know to turn it over. Repeat the same process on the other side, and remove it. Then to prepare it to be served, put it in-between 2 paper towels, and that way you can soak up the oil, and you wont have greasy chicken. This is usually served with mac and cheese, cornbread, black eyed peas, collard greens, general soul food, you know.
I learned to make fried chicken from cousin and grandmother. I had to learn it from them, because in my household my mother doesnt cook. I cook it at family gatherings. To me, chicken brings people together. I know that sounds funny but its true. I think that homemade fried chicken is like comfort food. Ive always had it when we have family get-togethers, for people that I dont usually see. Black people get made fun of for liking fried chicken, because its become a stereotype. But thats not really fair because its not necessarily because of the chicken, but because of its association with comfort and family.
While it may seem funny to put fried chicken down as a folk food, it is relevant. While few people think of fried chicken to be a personal folk dish, it is. I think that the validity of certain foods as a individual recipes and folk food can be jeopardized by their commercialization as fast food, or their classified as a food that only certain people eat. In addition I feel that Terika makes a valid point about the fact that fried chicken has become stereotypically a black food, or a food that black people are supposed to like. I think that people just like food because it tastes good, and not because they are genetically predisposed to like it. In addition certain foods can become comfort foods that are eaten and have connotations of happy times or family gatherings, as is the case with Terikas fried chicken.