This is a variation on traditional American-style fried chicken in a few ways. Firstly, there are no bones in the chicken legs (they cook quicker with the bones removed and are much more flavorful than the breast). Also, the chicken is first marinated in yogurt, herbs, and spices, then dredged in whole wheat flour, which offers added texture. Anyhow, this is not a greasy chicken recipe (if the oil is hot enough) and it is super delicious. You can eat it as is (as an entree with side dishes), on a sandwich, or with any number of dipping sauces. I diced it and rolled it in taco shells with salsa verde (here’s that recipe). If nothing else, I do know one thing about this recipe…bet you can’t eat just one.
Middle Eastern Inspired Fried Chicken
Makes about 4 servings
1 cup plain yogurt
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 small onion, sliced
2 jalapeño, seeded and minced
1 small bunch cilantro, washed and chopped
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 pounds boneless & skinless chicken thighs
½ cup whole wheat flour, plus extra for dredging
canola oil for frying
In a medium bowl, combine the yogurt, garlic, onion, jalapeño, cilantro, lemon, turmeric, and salt; stir together. Add the chicken and mix until thoroughly coated. Cover and refrigerate for about a half hour. Stir in the ½ cup of flour and allow it to rest another 10 minutes. Layer a baking sheet or large plate with extra flour and dredge the chicken in it allowing the onions, cilantro, etc to cling to the chicken. Transfer the coated chicken to a clean plate, shaking loose any extra flour. Heat about ½ inch of oil in a heavy skillet over medium heat. The oil should reach about 350F; you can also tell it’s hot enough when a piece of chicken is dipped in the oil and it sizzles immediately. Fry the chicken (in batches if necessary) for about 10-12 minutes, turning as needed. The chicken is cooked when the thickest piece is cut and there is no pink and its juices run clear. Drain on absorbent paper.