Southern Fried Chicken



1 3lb fryer chicken, cut up into 8 pieces

1 tsp salt

1 tsp black pepper

1 tsp paprika

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

1/4 tsp celery seed, ground

1/4 tsp dried rosemary

1/4 tsp dried thyme

1/4 tsp dried sage

2 cups buttermilk


1 tsp seasoning salt

1/2 tsp black pepper

1/2 tsp paprika

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1/2 tsp onion powder

1/2 tsp thyme

2 cups all-purpose flour

Vegetable shortening for frying

For the marinade, combine the salt, pepper, paprika, cayenne, ground celery seed, rosemary, thyme and sage. Season the chicken well with this mixture, tossing to coat evenly. 

Place the chicken in a large container and add the buttermilk. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for 8-12 hours. 

For the breading, combine the seasoning salt with the black pepper, paprika, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, onion powder and thyme. Mix well. Combine with the all-purpose flour and mix well. 

Remove the chicken from the buttermilk mixture and drain well. Strain the buttermilk and set aside. 

Using paper towels, remove as much of the buttermilk mixture as possible and pat dry. Dredge in the seasoned flour, shake off any excess, then dip the dredged chicken into the strained buttermilk. Allow any excess buttermilk to drip off, then re-dredge in flour. 

Place the double-dipped chicken on a wire rack and allow to come to room temperature for one hour. 

Melt enough shortening in a large skillet over low heat until it is at least 2" deep. Once melted, increase the heat to medium-high or until the oil temperature reaches 340 degrees. Carefully place the chicken, skin side down, in the pan, without crowding. 

Once the chicken goes into the pan, the temperature will drop. Keep checking the oil temperature and maintain it around 320 degrees; do not let it go over 325. Fry the chicken for 12-15 minutes or the juices run clear when the chicken is pierced and the outside is golden brown. The internal temperature should be 180 degrees. 

Place a wire rack atop a rimmed baking sheet lined with paper towels or foil. Place the cooked chicken on top of the rack. Let rest a few minutes before serving.