What is it about fried chicken that's so appealing? It's that crispy coating and that moist chicken inside, right? What if I told you that you could get that same result, with NO OIL? Not only is it not fried, but I put no oil in the pan at all. Parchment paper is the best, it's magic! It doesn't let the chicken stick (or anything for that matter), and it makes the pan easier to clean (just throw it away)! Hooray!
You will also notice that I take the skin off of the chicken pieces. Real southern fried chicken is made with the skin on. I think it's gross anyways, regardless of how unhealthy it is for you. It's up to you whether you want to keep it, but I think it was fine without it. The breading keeps it really moist.
The way the real southerners make this chicken is by letting it sit in buttermilk and spices for at least a few hours. Now, this flavours and tenderizes the chicken a lot, but if you don't have time to let it chill, you will be fine! Also, since this is a kosher blog, so to create that buttermilk flavour, I replace it with: (this may sound gross but trust me, it works!) soy milk and vinegar. The vinegar kind of curdles the soymilk and makes it thicker so it coats the chicken. Okay, enough about that!
The trick to breaded chicken, especially done in the oven, is something I learned from someone my friends and I call: the chicken lady. She knows what she's talking about, she's from the south! Legit!
It's all in the seasoning baby! Read the recipe, you shall see!
Oven Southern "Fried" Chicken:
9 chicken thighs, bone-in, skin removed, OR 1 chicken cut up, skin removed
1/4 cup soy milk
1/2 tsp white vinegar
1/2-1 tsp hot sauce
1- 1 1/2 cups bread crumbs (I happened to use pita crumbs, clearly any kind works)
1 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp chili powder or cayenne
3/4 tsp garlic powder
3/4 tsp onion powder
1 tsp chicken soup mix
1/8 tsp thyme (optional)
1/4 tsp pepper
pinch of salt
Preheat oven to 375°
Prepare baking sheet with parchment paper
In a medium bowl, pour in soy milk and vinegar. Let sit for a few minutes until it gets thicker. Crack in an egg and pour in the hot sauce. Whisk together until combined well. Place chicken in bowl and mix around so the chicken is coated. Now, you can either let it marinate, mixing every few hours, OR, if you don't have time (like most normal people), just make sure each piece got coated well. In a shallow pan, mix the rest of the ingredients. Dip each piece of chicken in the breadcrumbs, making sure both sides get covered in crumbs. Put the chicken on the pan, and stick in the oven for about 20-25 minutes, until bottoms are golden brown. Flip the chicken over, and continue cooking for another 15-20 minutes until both sides are brown and crispy.
Serve while hot with whatever you'd like! I kept it light because I had a hearty soup beforehand, so I served it with a tomato and avocado salad, but you can have it with mashed potatoes, fries, whatever your heart desires! F.Y.I, I love to drizzle the chicken with honey, it's so good that way!