Summer time is the perfect time for making great memories and sharing EXCELLENT food. One of my favorite picnic foods has to be, without a doubt, a piece of juicy and crispy fried chicken!
Now, I may not be a Southerner, but fried chicken has to meet a certain criteria in my book:
- It MUST be crispy.
- It MUST be moist.
- It MUST be seasoned well.
After experimenting with a few different types of breading for my chicken (and honestly, being a little disappointed), I was blown away when I came across a suggestion for pork rinds (you may know them as chiccarones, cracklings or scratchings). Really? Pork rinds?
Yep. And I’m really glad I decided to try it out. Even if you don’t like pork rinds (I honestly don’t care for them), you will LOVE these! For this recipe I used boneless chicken breasts and cut into strips, but it would work well with any piece! Just make sure to watch the cooking temperature for different cuts.
This recipe would be fantastic paired with some braised collard greens (and a hamhock of course) or some cheese covered cauliflower!
- 1.5 lb boneless chicken breasts sliced into strips
- 1 package plain pork rinds crushed
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons hot sauce
- 1 packet powdered ranch dressing mix
- cooking oil I used peanut
- salt and pepper to taste
Start by rinsing off your raw chicken and patting dry.
Beat egg, heavy cream, 1/4 of the ranch mix and hot sauce together into a shallow bowl.
Soak chicken strips in mixture for 5 minutes.
Pour oil until it has about an inch depth and heat on medium-low heat.
Crush an entire bag of pork rinds in a ziplock bag (I used an empty wine bottle to smash them with) and add the rest of the ranch mix.
Remove the chicken strips and drop into the ziplock bag filled with crushed pork rinds. Shake and toss to coat each one.
Once the oil is heated (around 350 F, use a thermometer if you can), slowly drop the chicken strips inside. Be careful not to overcrowd the pan
After 2-3 minutes, flip onto the other side. This will generally depend on the thickness of your chicken.
After cooking, carefully remove and cool on either a wire rack or plate lined with paper towels. You want all the excess oil to be extracted from the chicken. Let cool for 5 minutes and enjoy!