Tag Archives: garlic

Herby-garlicky fried chicken



My first time making fried chicken. In the same way that people celebrate daughter’s first dance recital, graduations, sweet sixteens, and passing your drivers license tests, I feel like celebrating for my first fried chicken attempt. I’m thinking I should get a Colonel Sanders style sticker and a hug from Paula Deen.

I mostly feel accomplished because in true Katie-cooking-style, the production of this chicken started a week in advance, with me subtly mentioning “fried chicken on Sunday” to my boyfriend Spencer. TBH it was a conversation elongator where I thought about chicken and word vomited the preposterous idea of trying fried chicken for the first time for a crowd on Memorial Day weekend. I should really know my lesson by now that if I’ve skimmed a topic relating to food, someone is going to call me out on it if I don’t actually get around to making it.

Sunday rolls around and no preparations are in order, so I’m thinking I’m putting this adventure off for another time. Both Spencer and myself have moved into different houses, don’t know where anything is, and now we’re set on making fried chicken. It’s in these circumstances you realize that if you forget about the crowd and focus on the dish, things MAY ACTUALLY come together. Well, I wouldn’t say that’s always the case, but in this situation, the results were pretty good.

Before I know it, I’m driving back to St Charles where, of course, I’ve left the most random of kitchen accessories that happen to be needed for our recipe, large marinating plastic bags. In the rush of an unpacking afternoon, Spence was able to brine the chicken for ~3-4 hours before I took over the cooking. I tell you all this because if you’re not intimidated by the behind the scenes work to a barbeque or dinner party, maybe you’ll be more inclined to try something new for friends.

I think there’s a few camps when it comes to entertaining – on the one hand, if you try something new for a crowd, you’re overwhelmed by trying to master the recipe and entertain at the same time, but oftentimes in my case, the trying-something-new is part of the fun of the night. Somehow, it-all-comes-together-at-the-last-minute is the name of the game, like the orchestra started playing a little too early and the curtain guy is reeling up the curtain while the characters are still getting positioned on stage.

In this case, I started my part while Andrew and William were already working their magic with some delicious avocado mac ‘n’ cheese and a blackberry strawberry kale salad. With little kitchen space, the three of us managed a meal of epic proportions without any major accidents, burned food, or overcookery of sorts.

I saw this recipe on an amazing episode of the Barefoot Contessa where Ina invites Tyler Florence over. In one afternoon (yes this timeframe amazes me as well), Ina and Tyler make a wedding cake sized birthday cake, homemade fried chicken, and take a leisurely visit to the local Hamptons farm.

In the case that you watch this episode, I’ll give you a sense for what you actually might be able to accomplish based on my timeline . I’d say you may want to just focus on this fried chicken, as we had to take a bit of time brining the chicken, then prepping the chicken, then returning to the store to buy more oil for frying. I’m not sure when they made this birthday cake but luckily it came together in one afternoon! Whew, to be Ina!

Here’s a few things that differed in our rendition of this meal. 1) Lenzie and Trent brought those amazing fake-cakey cookies with the themed frosting instead of having cake, 2) We kept to their use of bone-in chicken except for the breasts which Spencer deboned , 3) there was no visit to the local farm and 4) instead of having Tyler Florence help guide the cooking process, I had 3 twenty-something guys and 2 parents all pitch in!

I’m hoping you’re not intimidated by Ina’s spotless white kitchen, always-plentiful bowl of silver spoons, and lively-never-droopy blue hydrangeas. Make this for your friends and family and watch their episode at the bottom of this post if you have 1.99 to spare 🙂

Here’s a little snap of our cooking adventure featuring the crew: Andrew, William & Robin; the last few seconds continues with our MDW braves game visit…we ate fried chicken before we went so its all relevant right??

Tyler Florence’s Fried Chicken, adapted very slightly, serves 8-9 comfortably with a few leftovers

2 3-4 lb whole chickens, breasts de-boned, all other pieces bone in (thighs + drumsticks + wings)

3 cups all purpose flour

2 TBS garlic powder

2 TBS onion powder

2 TBS sweet paprika (can use regular if you run out of sweet)

2 tsp cayenne pepper (Adjust here if you’re partial to less spicy)

4 cups (1 quart) buttermilk

2 TBS sriracha or other hot sauce you like

peanut oil or vegetable oil for frying (we used a mixture of both since I ran out of peanut oil…make sure to buy one of the big jugs at the store)

1/2 head garlic, smashed, husks still on (this is for frying dont worry about the husks)

1/4 bunch fresh sage

1/4 bunch fresh thyme

4 big sprigs of fresh rosemary

fresh black pepper and kosher salt

2 lemons, cut into wedges, for serving

  1. A few hours in advance, or the night before, set up your chicken to brine. We used a big tupperware, but you can use a large bowl. Cover the chicken with water 1-inch above chicken. Sprinkle 1 TBS kosher salt for every quart of water you’ve added. Cover with aluminum foil and refrigerate at least two hours, preferably overnight. This is what’s going to make the chicken really tender.
  2. When you’re ready to start cooking, take your chicken out of the fridge and let it come to room temperature while you prep the frying ingredients. In a shallow platter or deep tupperware in my case, mix together your flour, dry spices, and season with salt and pepper. We learned that you don’t need to add too much salt here, because your chicken already has a good bit of salt absorbed from the brining process.
  3. Pour oil into a heavy bottomed pot / Dutch oven, about 2/3 of the way full. Put your whole herbs and garlic directly into the cold oil . As these heat up, don’t worry about them burning, these whole spices are what will flavor your oil. Clip on your candy thermometer, ensuring that the bottoms of it isn’t touching the bottom of the pan. Heat stove to medium high heat, and start prepping your station as the oil heats to 350-375.
  4. Meanwhile, set your chicken to the far left, setting a plate next to the brine mixture where you want to dry the chicken before putting it into the buttermilk. Next set a shallow dish with your buttermilk and sriracha next to the chicken. Set flour mixture to the right of that, closest to the stove.
  5. Heat the oven to about 150,or whatever is its lowest setting. I wanted to do this to keep the chicken warm while other batches were still trying. **if your chicken is still a bit cold when you start frying, you may need a quick bake after frying to finish cooking your chicken. A few reviewers from Tyler’s original recipe noted this. Our chicken was at room temp so we didn’t have this issue and we only used the oven for warming.
  6. Set a sheet pan or 9×13 dish in the oven where you can set chicken after frying to keep warm
  7. As your oil heats up, start dredging process with a batch of two pieces. The first step is to dry the brined chicken off with paper towels. You need to do this to make sure the coating sticks properly. Next dip chicken pieces in buttermilk mixture, shake gently to remove any excess, and dredge in flour mixture. Press gently in flour to make sure you get all the crevices covered, then flip to the other side. You can leave chicken in this mixture before frying.
  8. Once oil is hot, gently place two pieces in the oil with tongs. Let chicken fry for 12 minutes per batch, moving around about halfway through to make sure nobody is stuck on the bottom of the pot.
  9. While you wait for one batch to fry, start prepping 2-3 more pieces. Also have at least 3 onlookers observe and ooh and aah over frying oil cauldron. Make yourself a yummy cocktail or mocktail
  10. After 12 minutes, use a meat thermometer to check for doneness if you have one. Chicken should be at 155 when it comes out, but will cook off a bit more than that after you take it off. Thank you Julie Mitchell for checking temp for me since we didn’t have a thermometer!!
  11. place done pieces in the oven covering with aluminum foil while you move on to the next batch
  12. After all the chicken is done, place on a plate and garnish with your fried herbs. Squeeze a few lemon wedges to taste and place a few other wedges on the side to garnish . Serve to hungry friends, and smile big after you savor each bite. 😀









Sriracha Hummus and my new favorite party app


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Today I write to you with a new view on life. Let me tell you about the new, Argentine Katie, and how I’d like to convene with those of you who may share the same new views as me. I recently returned from an amazing trip with my cousins, aunt, uncle, and their grandmother to Buenos Aires. To be honest with you, I had no idea what to expect and had an amazing time exploring the city, meeting new people, and spending time with my cousin’s girlfriend’s amazing family.

While in Buenos Aires, I learned that we wait for EVERYONE to arrive before eating*. I’d like to really pronounce this as “eating asterisk” because what it really means is, let’s have a very large spread of appetizers and drink beer and be joyous until the last person arrives and then let’s still eat a completely normal meal as if we didn’t eat any of those apps.

SO, we found out that there is a tradition of serving “picada” before the meal. While I don’t think my family totally figured out what actually is included in the picada (apparently it really means there has to be some specific forms of meat and cheese), we associated it with a few key items.

While I did love the olives, cheese, and crackers they served, nothing compared to the saltiest salt-mine bag of peanuts that you could find at any grocery store. We were so amazed at the amount of salt in these snack bags we seriously considering draining them in a colander and saving the leftover salt at the bottom of the bag. This is the ULTIMATE pre-dinner snack which paired well with the Imperial beer.

mani peanuts

Second, PRINGLES. A great app that also went well with beer. From now on, I’m going to try and find the salt mine peanuts and have pringles when I entertain. These were party starters. Next time I go back, I want to bring this hummus with me and see if they’d like the American tradition to their picada. The only thing is, apparently Argentines don’t like spicy food :/. Until then, more for me!

This hummus recipe is an original from my friend Mike who is master of all spicy foods. An avid sriracha fan, Mike went so far as to carry a sriracha flag with him throughout a festival in Atlanta as the reference point for all of us to find throughout the day. Serve this up at your next dinner party and adjust the spice to your liking 🙂

Sriracha Hummus – easily adaptable to all spice pallettes

1 can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained and rinsed

1-2 cloves garlic, chopped slightly

3 TBS tahini

juice of 1 lemon

salt and pepper to taste

1/4-1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

SRIRACHA – looks like we used maybe 1.5-2 TBS sriracha

1. Combine all ingredients except olive oil in the bowl of your food processor, magic bullet, or blender. Preferably you want to use a food processor here, but if you have either of the others they will work. Pulse in the food processor until the mixture starts to become smooth.

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2. Once you’ve broken up the chickpeas and can see the garlic is small, slowly stream in olive oil. This is the part where you can start with a little bit and add more depending on how thick you like it. Mike likes his on the thicker side so that’s what you’ll see here…it’s on the lower end of the olive oil scale. Puree until smooth or keep a bit chunky if thats how you like it.

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3. Finish off with a heart-shaped sriracha garnish and a few sesame seeds. Serve with carrots, pita, cucumbers, or on top of a salad/sandwich.

Can’t wait to share the SWEETS I fell in love with in Argentina…I know you’re all on the edge of your chair wondering if I mean desserts or men amirite??? jajaja bon appetit! Let me know how the peanut picada works for you next time you have people over!

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Italian Sausage, Spinach, Tortellini Soup


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This recipe comes from my dear friend Edward’s mom and is your go-to recipe for cooking with men (boys). For our cooking date, I was gently steered towards not picking “any of that vegan stuff.” I must say it was a great choice for a cold night.

I especially appreciate cooking with people who find garlic to be as necessary of an influence on dishes as I do. While I wouldn’t suggest a high garlic factor recipe for a real date, in this case it was absolutely appropo. This recipe is great for a quick meal and involves little complication (you can’t mess it up that easily 🙂 )

Italian Sausage, Spinach, Tortellini Soup

serves 1 tall slightly Italian 20 something and 1 food blogger or 4 average eaters generously

2 (9 oz) packages of refrigerated cheese tortellini

3/4 lb sweet or hot Italian sausage

1 (14.5 oz) can of chicken broth (low sodium)

4 cups water

1 (10 oz) bag of frozen spinach, unthawed

1 (28 oz) can of Italian peeled tomatoes (can be chopped or whole)

1 can Ro-tel tomatoes

2-3 cloves garlic, minced

1 TBS italian seasoning (we used a combo of dried basil and oregano)

1. In a large dutch oven or soup pot, drizzle a tiny bit of olive oil and heat pan to medium. Break the sausages out of their casing and brown the sausage meat until slightly brown, breaking up the sausage with the back of your spoon.

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2. Add chicken broth and water and bring to a boil.

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IMG 3187 from thereshegoes35 on Vimeo.

Look at that stirring form, what a natural chef. We had a pump up playlist for this soup, naturally. Actually I think we just replayed the song in the vid over and over again. Oldie but a GOODIE.

3. Add spinach, seasonings, garlic, and both kinds of tomatoes, then bring to a boil for another 10 minutes.

4. Add in your tortellini and cook until pasta is cooked, about another 10-12 minutes.

5. Serve with parmesan if you have it and some vino.