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Peppery Chicken Fried Chicken

Prep time 30 mins
Cook time 12 mins
Fry time 15 mins
Yield Makes 8 to 10 servings
Make a crispy coating for fried chicken with by dredging the chicken in a mixture of flour and saltine crackers, plus a hit of freshly ground pepper.  Cut leftover chicken into strips, and serve over salad greens. Drizzle with creamy Ranch or blue cheese dressing.

Ingredients

  • 8 (6-ounce) skinned and boned chicken breasts
  • 4 1/2 teaspoons salt, divided
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper, divided
  • 76 saltine crackers (2 sleeves), crushed
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 8 cups milk, divided
  • 4 large eggs
  • Peanut oil

How to Make It

  1. Place chicken breasts between 2 sheets of heavy-duty plastic wrap, and flatten to 1/4-inch thickness using a meat mallet or rolling pin.

  2. Sprinkle 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper evenly over chicken. Set aside.

  3. Combine cracker crumbs, 2 cups flour, baking powder, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, 1 teaspoon black pepper, and ground red pepper.

  4. Whisk together 1 1/2 cups milk and eggs. Dredge chicken in cracker crumb mixture; dip in milk mixture, and dredge in cracker mixture again.

  5. Pour oil to a depth of 1/2 inch in a 12-inch skillet (do not use a nonstick skillet). Heat to 360°. Fry chicken, in batches, 10 minutes, adding oil as needed. Turn and fry 4 to 5 more minutes or until golden brown. Remove to a wire rack in a jellyroll pan. Keep chicken warm in a 225° oven. Carefully drain hot oil, reserving cooked bits and 2 tablespoons drippings in skillet.

  6. Whisk together remaining 1/2 cup flour, remaining 2 1/2 teaspoons salt, remaining 1 teaspoon black pepper, and remaining 6 1/2 cups milk. Pour mixture into reserved drippings in skillet; cook over medium-high heat, whisking constantly, 10 to 12 minutes or until thickened. Serve gravy with chicken.