May 2, 2017

Church Picnic Calendar 2017 - Fried Chicken, Sausage, Barbecue, Polka Music, Bingo and More (Just a little road trip out of town - most are on Sundays)

Food typically begins serving at 11:00 a.m. You can expect fried chicken, sausage, green beans, German potatoes, iced tea, bread, homemade desserts and often, picnic stew or barbecue as well.

April 29 - St. Mark Lutheran - Lake Jackson
April 29 - St. Bartholomew - Katy
April 30 - St. Mary's - Frydek
April 30 - St. Michael's - Weimar

May 7 - Queen of the Holy Rosary - Hostyn
May 14 - Christ Lutheran - Pattison
May 14 - Christ Lutheran - Loebau
May 21 - St. John's Lutheran - Deanville
May 28 - St. Joseph - Dime Box
May 28 - Sacred Heart - Halletsville
May 28 - Sts. Cyril and Methodius - Shiner
May 28 - St. Paul Lutheran - Giddings

June 4 - Sacred Hear - Flatonia
June 4 - Holy Trinity Corn Hill - Jarrell
June 11 - St. Mary's Catholic - Halletsville outskirts / St. Mary's
June 11 - St. Rose of Lima - Schulenburg
June 18 - St. John the Baptist - Ammansville
June 25 - United Church of Christ - Lyons
June 25 - Sts. Cyril and Methodius - Granger
June 25 - Sts. Peter and Paul - Plum
June 25 - Fayetteville Brethren - Fayetteville

July 2 - Sts. Cyril and Methodius - Dubina
July 4 - St. John the Baptist - St. John
June 16 - Ascension of Our Lord - Moravia
June 16 - St. James - Gonzales
July 28/29 - St. Mary of Visitation - Lockhart
July 30 - Nativity of Virgin Mary - Penelope

August 6 -Sts. Peter and Paul - Frelsburg
August 6 - St. Anthony of Padua - Palacios
August 6 - St. Joseph - Yoakum
August 13 - St. Michael's - Weimar
August 15 -Assumption of Virgin Mary - Praha
August 20 - St. Andrew - Hillje
August 20 -St. Monica - Cameron
August 27 -Sts. Cyril and Methodius - Cistern
August 27 - St. Mary - Ellinger
August 27 - Immanuel Lutheran - La Vernia
August 27 - Holy Rosary - Rosenberg

September 3 - Nativity of Virgin Mary - High Hill
September 3 - St. John the Baptist - Fayetteville
September 3 - Our Lady of Guadalupe - Cuero
September 3 - Sacred Heart - Halletsville
September 3 - Sts. Cyril and Methodius - Shiner
September 3 - St. Mary's - Plantersville
September 3 - St. Stanislaus - Chappell Hill
September 3 - Sts. Cyril and Methodius - Granger
September 3 - Immaculate Conception - Sealy
September 3 - Holy Cross - Warda
September 10 - Sts. Cyril and Methodius - Marak
September 10 - St. Mary of Assumption - Taylor
September 16-17 - St. John Nepomucene - Ennis
September 17 - St. Joseph - Moulton
September 17 - St. Wenceslaus - Holmna
September 23-24 - St. Jerome - Houston
September 24 - St. Joseph - Cyclone
September 24 - St. James - Seguin
September 24 - St. Philip the Apostle - El Campo
September 24 - Immanuel Lutheran - Killeen

October 1 - Queen of Holy Rosary - Hostyn
October 1 - Holy Rosary - Frenstat
October 1 - St. Luke's - Loire
October 1 - St. Roch - Mentz
October 1 - Sacred Heart - Crosby
October 1 - St. Ann - La Vernia
October 8 - St. Anthony - Columbus
October 8 - Holy Cross - East Bernard
October 8 - Church of the Visitation - Lott
October 8 - Our Lady of Victory - Victoria
October 15 - Guardian Angel - Wallis
October 15 - Holy Cross Lutheran - Yoakum
October 22 - Sacred Heart - La Grange
October 22 - St. Michael Archangel - Needville
October 22 - St. Paul Lutheran - Columbus
October 22 - Sts. Peter and Paul - Bellville

November 5 - Our Lady of Lourdes - Victoria

May 1, 2017

Gus's Fried Chicken Recipe - 2017

(Special Note to My Readers: Also, be sure to check out my other Gus's Fried Chicken postings as these have additional information on spices for this recipe)

Today, I came as close as I have gotten to figuring out the Gus's Fried Chicken recipe.

I started this blog back in March of 2013.

It is not the Saveur Magazine recipe and it is not the Nora Jones recipe (the two most common recipes that show up when one does a search on the Internet).

The secret is that it is a slurry. You may want to think of it as a batter, but I think slurry is almost a better description since the cornstarch doesn't really fully blend in with the buttermilk (you need to keep stirring as it does separate out if left sitting). You have to mix corn starch and buttermilk to the right consistency, and then add just the right amount of paprika, cayenne, garlic powder, salt, etc. followed by just enough Louisiana hot sauce to make it work. Too much hot sauce will affect the crispness. It needs to be a slightly thicker batter ( I would describe it as crepe batter consistency, or, a slightly thinner pancake batter) and it turns out it is also important to leave the skin on the chicken to help the crispness. (Although: I also want to try a straight hot sauce and cornstarch experiment, an icewater and cornstarch experiment, and also a whole milk and cornstarch experiment in the future).

I switched to Canola oil for a while ("Canadian oil low acid"), ignoring my personal opinion that Canola oil gives food a fishy smell and taste. But I am back to recommending Crisco oil or peanut oil as my personal preferences. I just don't like Canola oil.
So, here is what needs to come together for this to work.

The important thing is:
Buttermilk - 1 1/4 cups buttermilk to....
Cornstarch - 1 cup corn starch to make the basic slurry
(experiment with reducing the amount of buttermilk to corn starch to make a thicker slurry)
(note: I've tried a water and corn starch slurry but wasn't pleased with the results. I haven't tried a water and egg with corn starch slurry though…the egg would add viscosity)

And then you will want to season to taste (I have specifically not given guidelines here as I want you to do your own homework; use your best judgement. Everyone's taste buds are different)

Paprika (this will help darken the chicken, giving it some color; I will usually do 1/4 tsp)
Cayenne (this will add heat; I will usually do a 1/2 tsp)
Black pepper (this will add heat; I will usually do a 1/2 tsp)
White pepper (this will add heat; I will usually do a 1/2 tsp)
Garlic powder (personally I just use a pinch because, for me, garlic powder adds an aftertaste to the chicken; but that is just a personal bias)
Salt (go easy on the salt; you can always add salt at the table)
Louisiana hot sauce (start off with 8 dashes per above buttermilk/cornstarch slurry)
MSG (most commercial chicken has some MSG in it; start off with 1/4 tsp and adjust to your preference with the next batch that you make)

Gus's Fried Chicken Recipe - Supplemental - Further Experiments with the Recipe

1 cup corn starch
1 1/4 cup buttermilk
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp paprika
1/8 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp Kosher salt

Note 1: It needs some more heat and it needs some of the vinegar flavor from Louisiana hot sauce.
Note 2: Added a pinch or two of sugar to the slurry to test out effect of sugar on the recipe. Not recommended. Added a noticeable and not pleasant sweetness.
Note 3: Corn starch creates a thin crunchy candy-like crust. But it needs the cayenne and paprika to add color.

Gus's Fried Chicken Recipe Supplemental - More ruminations on Gus's Fried Chicken

It is 2017. My previous posts on Gus' Fried Chicken covered my observation that the closest that I could come to the thin, crackly crust would be with a slurry built of buttermilk and corn starch. Is that what the original Gus did back in the 50's? I'm not sure. But it is the closest that I have come in my home kitchen. I never truly cracked the spicing. I could never get the chicken spicy enough, and that was with trying different chiles, black pepper, buttermilk soaks, etc. (see my previous postings).

More recently (actually March 30, 2017 marks the date) I came across a recipe that I had not seen before that calls for an ice water batter with a 50/50 corn starch and flour mix, description of a thin batter to dip the fried chicken in, resulting in a (so said) thin, crispy crust. The writer, Diane Unger, writing for Cook's Country advised: "Ordinary water worked best, bringing to mind some of the Civil War-era-batter-fried chicken recipes I'd researched. Presumably, times were hard and water was fine." Well, this comment sent me in a whole new direction. You see, I was scratching my head, thinking about "what ingredients would have been available in mid 50's, early 60's Tennessee for the recipe? Had someone in the Vanderbilt family spent time in Korea (Korean war era) and learned about the batters used for Korean fried chicken? Maybe not, I'm thinking now after reading her recipe and comments.

Because now, I had Diane Unger mentioning the Civil War.

And so, I began searching through vintage mid to late 1800 cookbooks for batter recipes. So far, I have not turned up anything (I've looked through many vintage African-American cookbooks now without finding any fried chicken batter recipes...just dredge and fry recipes) and hope to contact Diane Unger for some recommended sources. But it would make sense that persons living in Tennessee might have family recipes passed down from that era. Example follows:

Her recipe, published in Cook's Country and republished in the Best Ever Recipes publication called for a brine of sugar, water and salt and then a batter of water, AP flour, cornstarch with baking powder, paprika, and cayenne pepper.

Diane Unger Interview on YouTube

Landing On Love : a website with photos showing preparation of the recipe

Amos Schorr: Low Gluten Flour: In terms of pure crispiness, yes. But you also need to take into account the thickness of the crust itself. Korean-style fried chicken, for example, uses pure cornstarch, and that gives it an incredibly crispy, incredibly thin crust. But American fried chicken is different. It's meant to have a thicker, better seasoned crust.

Chris Young:   Hi @Chris Young. Thank you for your response. I apologise for persisting with the question: why did @Grant Crilly recommend using bread flour for the fried chicken recipe, especially considering how the recipe on Modernist Cuisine's website also recommends using cake flour? I understand that batters and coatings don't work according to one-size-fits-all. However, if you can elaborate on batters and coatings for deep frying and detailed aspects, it will be extremely useful then. Thank you. I think it would have to do with the size of the grains. Cake flour is a finer grain, and bread a little larger. I reckon a larger grain can absorb more milk, and would allow for a thicker coating. Also, cake flour typically is high in starch content

John Fisher, et. al.:   John Fisher@Ellen Hi, any chance you could get an answer for us on this. Which flour will yield the crispier crust, pastry, AP or high gluten? Hi @Saad & @John Fisher: Just had a chance to talk with Grant about this:"The question is, do you want crispy or crunchy? If you want crispy go with the starchier option (rice flour etc.), if you want crunchy, you need high-protein (bread flour).
I've used a combination of cornstarch and rice flour with good results.
That is what I use for crispy chicken wings. Low gluten high starch.
I don't have the answer. However, I would like to point out that in their fish & chips video, the guys coated the fish (dipped in Methyl-cellulose) with cake flour. However, (as you mentioned) in the fried chicken video Grant commented on how using cake flour would result in a soft and spongy coating.

(Here follow my original notes from previous years. But I recommend you go back and read the original posting and the supplements here in my blog.)

Gus's Fried Chicken Recipe

It is not the Saveur Magazine recipe and it is not the Nora Jones recipe (the two most common recipes that show up when one does a search on the Internet).

The secret is that it is a slurry. You have to mix corn starch and buttermilk to the right consistency. It needs to be a slightly thicker batter ( I would describe it as crepe batter consistency, or, a slightly thinner pancake batter) and it turns out it is also important to leave the skin on the chicken to help the crispness.

I switched to Canola oil for a while ("Canadian oil low acid"), ignoring my personal opinion that Canola oil gives food a fishy smell and taste. But I am back to recommending Crisco oil or peanut oil as my personal preferences. I just don't like Canola oil.

So, here is what needs to come together for this to work.

The important thing is:
Buttermilk - 1 1/4 cups buttermilk to....
Cornstarch - 1 cup corn starch to make the basic slurry
(experiment with reducing the amount of buttermilk to corn starch to make a thicker slurry)

An Update to My Gus's Fried Chicken Recipe in Response to an Email - 2017

A. Hi Jay,
I stumbled across your blog as part of my on-going search for the ultimate fried chicken recipe. As a Canadian living in England, I don't know if I can say for sure I've ever had a properly decent piece of fried chicken, so all my info has to come via the internet.
I've been perusing your various notes on Gus's fried chicken, and I was just wondering if you had a more fully-formed recipe I could follow. Not your "final" version, but just the recipe you're working from at the moment, with steps and instructions (brine this long, fry at this temp, use this many chillies...etc.) Is this something you have written down already, or are you more of an improviser?
Thanks so much for your hard work and dedication to such a proud (and often unappreciated) tradition. Hopefully one day I'll have occasion to make use of your calendar of Texas fried chicken picnics, and try the real deal.

Cheers, John

B. Hello John! Thank you for this great email.

I lived in the UK in the early 70's and remember watching the change as more and more American fast food chains came to the UK. We used to go to that original Hard Rock Cafe to get a "proper" hamburger. So much has changed. Now I am sure that KFC is everywhere. I am not certain if the UK has Popeye's or Church's fried chicken franchises yet. And actually, if you get to a Popeye's right when they open and the first chicken of the day comes out of the fryers, it can be pretty darn good.

Currently, if I am making fried chicken for friends, I am using the Donald Link Real Cajun fried chicken recipe that shows up in my March 2013 posting. It is my standard default. I use the same spices that he does, excepting the salt, because I am more sensitive to salty foods.

One of the problems we have here in Texas is that the grocery store chickens are so large that there is a problem assuring that the interior will be thoroughly cooked when the crust color is that golden brown that I desire. Thus, I remove the chicken from the fryer pan when the color is golden, and finish by placing the pieces in an oven at around 300 F to finish cooking.

(You'll note that I skip between English units and metric. My preference is metric because of its precision but I also think in terms of cups and Fahrenheit).

With respect to the Gus style batter recipe, I am now putting 2-3 cups of buttermilk in a blender, processing that with 2-3 fresh jalapeño green chiles that I have toasted on an open flame until the exterior skin is blackened, then peeling the skin and processing the softened chiles with the buttermilk. This bath is what I soak the chicken pieces in for 24 hours. I then remove them, shake off the liquid and dip the pieces in the slurry that I described to fry. This is to get some internal "heat" to be absorbed by the chicken. Though I haven't done it yet, I could see also processing several cloves of garlic at the same time for the marinade/brine.

One 3-4 lb chicken cut into pieces, legs, thighs, wings, breast portion cut into four pieces to reduce their size.
Brined for 24 hours in a 2-3 cup buttermilk bath to which has been processed 2-3 roasted, say, 30 grams, and softened jalapeño chiles.
Removed from bath, all excess liquid shaken off and/or pieces dried with paper or cloth towels and dipped in the Gus formula slurry of cornstarch and buttermilk.

Additional note: the original Gus's recipe definitely includes/uses Louisiana style hot sauce and/or paprika. I remember how red their batter was. This recipe does not have that ingredient as I had not worked on that approach as much recently. My recent experiments were to figure out how to get the chicken to have some "heat", thus, my current method of processing jalapeño chiles with buttermilk. Actually I am using a combo of ghost pepper and jalapeño but that is another story for later.

Fried at 325F (note: here is where work needs to be done. I recently judged a fried chicken competition and they did a first fry at 300 F and then removed and did a second fry at 350 F to get the chicken very crispy....I need to work on my temperatures).

Now. My preference is for deep frying where the pieces are totally immersed and not crowded. If you prefer a pan method, that is okay too. You will not need as much oil. But the chicken may be a little greasier if the upper portion that is not fully submerged grabs more oil. Also, because the bottom of the pieces will be in contact with the pan, it will brown more.

When the chicken reaches a golden color, remove the pieces and place into a 300 F oven for about 30 minutes to assure that the interior is fully cooked (you may need to reduce the time) depending on the size of chicken pieces. This is one of the variables that will have to be worked on in your kitchen. Typically it is the breasts, not the legs or thighs or wings that are not cooked all the way through. (What you are looking for and should achieve if successful, is a thin, crackling crust as opposed to the standard, thicker more breadier crust of a seasoned flour/buttermilk dip such as the Real Cajun recipe).

You will note that I did not mention salt or pepper. That is because I do not like overly salty food and prefer to just salt my chicken after it is fried, when served at the table. If you wish, you. Any add 1 tsp of salt to the buttermilk brine. You may also decide to add 1 tsp of salt to the cornstarch and buttermilk batter. Likewise, pepper. If you use the Real Cajun recipe, just use the seasonings that Donald Link recommends.

Now. One further note. In my research around Texas I have seen chickens dipped in ice water followed by seasoned flour, milk and egg followed by seasoned flour, buttermilk followed by seasoned flour. My opinion is that ice water results in the crispiest crunch, followed by buttermilk which is a little more bready but the one most people prefer.

Be sure to plan to serve the chicken hot and don't cover it because any residual moisture or steam will soften the crust and you will lose your crunch. Thus, keeping the chicken in the oven as needed will assist.

One final note. Another "UK friendly" recipe for pan frying, if you don't want to go to this extreme on a regular basis is this very fine chicken cacciatore recipe from Giada de Laurentiis.

Giada de Laurentiis Chicken Cacciatore

Paula Deen Recipe - Good Ol' Paula Deen, Y'all

I became more respectful of Paula Deen after I saw her do several hours of what can only be called 'stand up' at the Metro cooking show last year. Before that she was one of those Food Network personalities that I would turn off the sound to and just read the close captioning. I liked her recipes but that whole "y'all" thing got to me. But she won me over with her humor and command of the crowd.

I came across a recipe of hers that uses eggs and hot sauce. So, since I am ready to try out egg batters, this sounds perfect for my next experiments. What will it taste like? Stick around for more details.

Update: I did the chicken recipe and consider this a very good recipe if one likes the more cracker-like crunchy crust. I believe that the lack of moisture, the vinegar in the hot sauce and the eggs prevented the gluten from developing as much as would be the case with a milk or water soak. This was my first use of a self-rising flour, too. The crust stayed crispy long after the chicken came out of the fryer, again because the gluten hadn't developed. Flavor-wise, even with a cup of hot sauce mixed into the eggs, it wasn't that spicy. I cut large chicken breasts into thirds and found that, when the crust was the right color and crunch, the interior hadn't cooked thoroughly. So, I sliced into the pieces with a knife, cutting through to the center to open the chicken up, and returned them to the fryer. I followed the recipe and did not flour, dip and re-flour. I did an experiment with half with the dutch oven covered, in order to test out the pressure cooker theory. But I couldn't detect any significant difference.

Pressure cooking. KFC and Pollo Campero both use a pressure frying method. I always assumed that this meant they were sealing the chicken in a pressure cooker. But recently I've read up on using a heavy, cast iron dutch oven, the lid of which holds in the steam and allows pressure to build up.

Impressed by the crunch but prefer the classic buttermilk, AP flour batter still.

Southern Fried Chicken

From Paula's Home Cooking/Paula's Party Episode: Decades/Savannah Country cookbook/Mar/Apr 2007 issue

5 stars based on 229 Reviews
Servings: 6-8 servings
Prep Time: 10 min
Cook Time: 14 min
Difficulty: Easy


Paula Deen’s House Seasoning
2 1/2 lb chicken, cut into pieces
2 cup self-rising flour
1 cup hot red pepper sauce
3   eggs


Heat the oil to 350 degrees F in a deep pot. Do not fill the pot more than 1/2 full with oil.
In a medium size bowl, beat the eggs. Add enough hot sauce so the egg mixture is bright orange (about 1 cup). Season the chicken with the House Seasoning. Dip the seasoned chicken in the egg, and then coat well in the flour. Place the chicken in the preheated oil and fry the chicken in the oil until brown and crisp. Dark meat takes longer than white meat. Approximate cooking time is 13 to 14 minutes for dark meat and 8 to 10 minutes for white meat.
Recipe Courtesy of Paula Deen

Donald Link's Cajun Fried Chicken The "Holy Grail" (One of my favorite recipes ever)

I have used a buttermilk and flour batter recipe for years. However, for newbies, here is the best one I have found, and used, in recent years.

Cajun Fried Chicken

Cutting the chicken into 10 pieces instead of the more typical eight results in smaller, easy-to-hold pieces with more crispy, crusty goodness.–Donald Link
How brilliant is that aforementioned trick of cutting each breast in half?! Not only does it make for smaller pieces with more surface area—hence more of that coveted Cajun-y coating—but it ensures today’s size D-cup chicken breasts cook relatively quickly, circumventing the problem of the coating becoming too burnished while waiting for the meat to cook through. Brilliant.

Cajun Fried Chicken Recipe


  • One 3- to 4- pound chicken, whole or pre-cut into pieces
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 5 dashes Louisiana hot sauce
  • 1 cup buttermilk, shaken well
  • 3 cups lard, vegetable shortening, or bacon drippings
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour


  • 1. Pat the chicken dry. Cut the chicken into 10 pieces instead of the usual 8. To create the extra two pieces, cut the breast off the backbone, and then cut each breast in half, which will give you two wings, two thighs, two legs, and four pieces of breast. (Editor’s Note: You really must partake of this nifty little trick.) Place the chicken pieces in a large bowl and season with the salt, pepper, cayenne, white pepper, garlic powder, and hot sauce, and toss to coat evenly. Cover with plastic and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 1 day (the longer the better, to allow the seasonings to permeate the meat).

  • 2. Remove the chicken from the dry spices, allowing any liquid to drip back into the bowl, and place the chicken in a clean bowl. Pour the buttermilk over the chicken.
  • 3. Heat the lard, vegetable shortening, or bacon fat in a large cast-iron skillet to 350°F (176°C), or until a pinch of flour sizzles when it’s dropped in the fat.
  • 4. As the oil heats, remove the chicken from the buttermilk, allowing any excess liquid to drip off, and transfer the chicken to a clean bowl. Sprinkle with the flour and toss to coat.
  • 5. When the oil is ready, add the chicken pieces to the skillet in batches, shaking off any excess flour before adding them to the oil. Start with the larger bone-in cuts in the first round, as they will take longer to cook. Then fry the chicken breasts in the second round. For the crispiest results, it’s important not to overcrowd the pan. Fry the first batch of chicken about 8 minutes on each side, using tongs to turn it as necessary, making sure the oil does not get too hot. The oil should have a mellow sizzle, not a raging boil, or it will make the outside of the chicken too dark before the inside is cooked. Transfer the chicken to a plate lined with paper towels to soak up the excess oil. The breasts will take about 6 minutes on each side. Don’t be in such a rush to eat the chicken right out of the fat; it’s too hot, for one thing. And if you let it sit for a few minutes, the juices will settle and it will be more pleasurable to eat.
  • The Recipe From Hell

    I had to chuckle when I saw this recipe for "Popeye's Fried Chicken". This has to be an early April Fool's joke?

    Popeye's Fried Chicken

    recipe at a glance
    Rating: 4/5
    4 stars - 3 reviews

    recipe is ready in 30-60 minutes ready in: 30-60 minutes

    serves/makes:   4

    Be the first to upload an photo of this recipe


    3 cups self-rising flour
    1 cup cornstarch
    3 tablespoons seasoned salt
    2 tablespoons paprika
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1 package dry Italian salad dressing mix
    1 package (1.5 ounce size) dry onion soup mix
    1 package (.5 ounce size) spaghetti sauce mix
    3 tablespoons sugar
    3 cups Corn flakes cereal, crushed slightly
    eggs, well beaten
    1/4 cup cold water
    4 pounds chicken, cut up


    Combine first 9 ingredients in large bowl. Put the cornflakes into another bowl. Put eggs and water in a 3rd bowl. Put enough corn oil into a heavy roomy skillet to fill it 1" deep. Get it HOT! Grease a 9x12x2 baking pan. Set it aside. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Dip chicken pieces 1 piece at a time as follows:

    1-Into dry coating mix.

    2-Into egg and water mix.

    3-Into corn flakes.

    4-Briskly but briefly back into dry mix.

    5-Drop into hot oil, skin-side-down and brown 3 to 4 minutes on medium high. Turn and brown other side of each piece. Don't crowd pieces during frying.

    Place in prepared pan in single layer, skin-side-up. Seal in foil, on 3 sides only, leaving 1 side loose for steam to escape. Bake at 350 degrees F for 35-40 minutes removing foil then to test tenderness of chicken. Allow to bake uncovered 5 minutes longer to crisp the coating. 

    Gus' Fried Chicken

    Gus's Fried Chicken - You will hear me talking about Gus's Fried Chicken on this blog and elsewhere, not because it is the best fried chicken that I have ever had. But because the batter was unique enough that it had me scratching my head on what was in it. I haven't done any experimentation as of this date with brown rice flour. But I can confirm that a 50/50 ratio of wheat flour and corn flour comes closer than a straight wheat flour recipe.  My other guess is that there is some sugar in it. Dylan at Boomtown Coffee confirmed to me that sugar will contribute to the crispness.  Anyway. Here is a video or two of what we are talking about.

    (Update: I will discover that the base is a slurry of 1 cup cornstarch to 1 1/4 buttermilk)

    So cool that Pollos Hermanos on Breaking Bad owner and all around bad guy is Gus.

    Korean Fried Chicken - Toreore and Beyond - A Collection of Korean Fried Chicken Recipes - 2015 and 2016


    Update 2017. New ownership, and a flour based fried chicken crust. Following notes are from when it was a corn starch crust, original ownership.

    This is the "secret" ingredient, but they are using the "extra crispy" version:

    Previous comments on Toreore from 2013/2014:

    "Today saw me making a pilgrimage to Ranch 99 and Super H-Mart in search of a Park Brand Kim Chee Sauce, mentioned in a recipe for fried chicken. It wasn't available but I took the opportunity to have the Number 6 at Chicken and Joy (aka Toreore or Nonghyup Moguchon) in the H-Mart grocery store. This is the hot, sweet, spicy option. It wasn't Gus's. Not by a long shot. But in terms of flavor it came close. And it was delicious. The chicken is cut fresh and then dipped in a dry mix and deep fried for 15 minutes. It is then tossed with the sauce of your choice. The flour mix has little if any wheat flour in it (I was told ).

    It is supposed to be corn flour based. I ordered a serving to go, sauce on the side, picked up some seasoned boneless skinless chicken thighs, some corn flour and also some Maseca. I tried several different versions:

    1. Maseca
    2. Corn Flour
    3. Corn flour with a little wheat flour and a little rice flour

    I had the original take-out for comparison. The original from Chicken and Joy had a smoother crust. But it was not a wheat flour based crust. The three of mine were more gritty, with the Maseca being the most gritty of all. But I can confirm that I came close.  I couldn't duplicate their dry mix. But my three attempts would all work perfectly well if tossed with the sweet and spicy Korean sauce. Makes me want to do some research into tempura and/or Korean batters.

    Because I could not locate the Park Brand sauce, I bought another kimchi sauce whose first ingredients were chilli powder and garlic.

    Photos of the Experiment (Original Chicken and Joy is on the Left) (Without the Sauce)"

    1. Maseca

    2. Corn Flour

    3. Corn Flour with some Rice Flour and Wheat Flour Added

    Update - January 2016 - Recipe for a Spicy Crispy Chicken Without Spattering Grease

    Spicy Crispy Chicken recipe
    I’ve written about my take on Korean Fried Chicken (KFC) before and waxed poetic about how those spicy crispy wings make me swoon, but heating a big pot of oil and double frying wings is not a project that I’d want to undertake on a weeknight.
    That’s why I’ve come up with this fast alternative to tame those urgent KFC cravings, on days when I just don’t feel like dealing with a pot full of used oil and a grease spattered stovetop.
    Spicy Crispy Chicken recipe
    The trick to getting the skin crispy is to throw the chicken into a cold pan with no oil, and then slowly raise the temperature, coaxing most of the oil out of the skin.
    Spicy Crispy Chicken recipe
    By weighing down the chicken it ensures an even contact patch between the skin and the hot pan, leaving a paper-thin layer of impossibly crisp skin.
    Spicy Crispy Chicken recipe
    Coated with a sweet and spicy glaze, it makes for the perfect accompaniment to a bowl of steamed rice or a frosty cold beer.
    Spicy Crispy Chicken recipe

    Marc Matsumoto is the food blogger behind Fresh TastesMarc Matsumoto is a culinary consultant and recipe repairman who shares his passion for good food through his website For Marc, food is a life long journey of exploration, discovery and experimentation and he shares his escapades through his blog in the hopes that he inspires others to find their own culinary adventures. Marc’s been featured in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today, and has made multiple appearances on NPR and the Food Network.

    Crisco - 1913 !

    We had iced over roads here in Houston today and it just wasn't safe to drive in to work.

    Camped out with the internetz, I started exploring and came across a Crisco cookbook from the early 1900's. It was fascinating because, reading through the recipes, I quickly realized that foods we consider standard comfort food fare, were already in place a century ago. The section on the "logic" behind hydrogenation that led to the creation of Crisco was very interesting. So, of course, I had to scroll down to the section on Fried Chicken.  Here is a copy paste of that section. But I highly recommend your checking out the original book at Gutenberg. Note the hot sweet cream and hot roasted peanuts variation below and also the corn croquettes recipe.

    Fried Chicken

    Select young tender chickens and disjoint. Wash carefully and let stand over night in refrigerator.


    (Kate B. Vaughn)
    Drain chicken but do not wipe dry. Season with salt and white pepper and dredge well with flour. Fry in deep Crisco hot enough to brown a crumb of bread in sixty seconds. It requires from ten to twelve minutes to fry chicken. Drain and place on a hot platter garnished with parsley and rice croquettes.


    (Kate B. Vaughn)
    Make batter of 1 cupful flour, 1 teaspoonful salt, 2 grains white pepper, 1/2 cupful water, 2 well beaten eggs, and 1 tablespoonful melted Crisco. Have kettle of Crisco hot enough to turn crumb of bread a golden brown in sixty seconds. Drain chicken but do not dry. Dip each joint separately in batter and fry in the Crisco until golden brown. It should take from ten to twelve minutes. Serve on a folded napkin garnished with parsley.


    (Kate B. Vaughn)
    Drain chicken but do not wipe dry. Season with salt and white pepper and dredge well with flour. Put three tablespoonfuls Crisco in frying pan and when hot place chicken in pan; cover, and allow to steam for ten minutes. Uncover, and allow chicken to brown, taking care to turn frequently. Serve on hot platter, garnished with parsley and serve with cream gravy.


    Select medium-sized chickens and wash well, then cut into neat pieces and season them. Mix 1 cupful cornmeal with 1 cupful flour, 1 tablespoonful salt and 1 tablespoonful black pepper. Dip each piece in mixture and fry in hot Crisco twelve minutes. Drain and serve with cornmeal batter bread.


    Wash young chicken, cut into neat pieces, dust with salt, pepper, and flour, and fry in hot Crisco twelve minutes. Drain, place on hot platter, pour over it 1/2 pint hot sweet cream, sprinkle over with chopped hot roasted peanuts, little salt and pepper.

    Fried Chicken, Mexican Style

    1 tender chicken
    Salt and pepper to taste
    1 clove garlic
    1 seeded green pepper
    2 large tomatoes
    5 tablespoonfuls Crisco
    Corn croquettes
    For Croquettes
    2 tablespoonfuls Crisco
    1 can or 14 ears corn
    2 tablespoonfuls flour
    2 cupfuls milk
    1/2 teaspoonful sugar
    Pepper and salt to taste
    1 egg
    For chicken. Draw, wash and dry chicken, then cut into neat joints, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Heat Crisco in frying pan, add clove of garlic and pepper cut in small pieces. When garlic turns brown take out, put chicken in, fry till brown, then cover closely, allow to simmer till ready. A short time before covering chicken, add tomatoes peeled and cut in small pieces.
    For croquettes. Drain liquor from can of corn, or grate ears, and chop kernels fine. Blend Crisco and flour together in pan over fire, add milk, stir till boiling and cook five minutes, stirring all the time, add seasonings, and corn, and cook five minutes, then allow to cool. When cold, form lightly with floured hands into neat croquettes, brush over with beaten egg, toss in crumbs and fry in hot Crisco to a golden brown. Drain. Place chicken on hot platter, garnish with croquettes and serve hot.

    Adding "Heat" Adding "Spice" To Your Fried Chicken

    Based on some suggestions from some readers of this blog, I lightly grilled two habanero chiles and one medium size jalapeño chile, put them into a blender with three cloves of garlic and two cups of buttermilk. I processed this mixture and used it to soak my chicken pieces. I was pleased to discover that, yes, this is a way to add 'heat' to the chicken flesh proper. It worked. One commenter had noted that based on their experience, to get this heat one needs to add much much more chile or black pepper or cayenne than one would think one should. And that is how to infuse the chicken with chile 'heat'.

    Thanks to Dana LeJune and several 'anonymous' commenters for the guidance.