Fried chicken on a homemade biscuit with pickle and slaw. Lunch anyone?

SIMPLE MAGIC THAT ELEVATES FRIED chicken on a biscuit.

Fresh greens in the form of a deconstructed Cole slaw and a top-quality mayo-based dressing give this sandwich the yin and yang is deserves. 

Fresh greens in the form of a deconstructed Cole slaw and a top-quality mayo-based dressing give this sandwich the yin and yang is deserves. 

You've heard it here before: Pick great ingredients and get out of their way. 

Music and food-pairing, my people. You just get hungry listening to music. 

Music and food-pairing, my people. You just get hungry listening to music. 

But even the simplest dishes deserve a little extra love. Luckily, with this fried chicken sandwich on a homemade biscuit with an equally homemade slaw, that extra love is easy. 

Let’s start with the fried chicken, shall we? Because, fried chicken. 

Fried chicken plus heat plus sweet.

Any day of the week, give me something spicy, salty, and covered in honey. 

Here’s how this one works: 

  • Soak six organic chicken thighs (boneless, skinless) in 1-1/2 cup whole milk with 1 small onion grated on a box grater.
  • Add 2 T. Kosher salt, 1 teaspoon black pepper, 1 teaspoon garlic powder. 
  • Let this hang out on the counter, giving it a little shake once in a while till the chicken comes to room temperature. (You could refrigerate for later, but bring back to room temp before moving on to the next step.)
  • Dredge the chicken in 2 cups crushed Ritz(c) crackers and 1 cup all-purpose flour. 
  • Dunk in 5 beaten egg whites. 
  • Dredge again in cracker mixture.
  • In your EuroCAST deep-sided fry pan over medium heat, heat 4 inches of corn oil till hot but not smoking and fry chicken pieces until golden brown and cooked through. 
  • Drain on a rack

Dust with:

  • 2 teaspoons chili powder, 1 teaspoon ground cumin, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. 

Drizzle the honey! 

About a biscuit

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I love a great biscuit, and I'm a food nerd, so when I discovered Cook's Illustrated's biscuit deep-dive, I was in heaven. 

If you don't know Cook's Illustrated, their TV show and their recipe books, you are in for a treat, especially if you're fascinated with exactly why certain recipes work -- because they science all the cooking for you to find out exactly why certain recipes don't work.

And if you cannot be bothered (or don't have time) to study this cooking version of differential calculus ... you can skip to their recipes. 

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The Cook's Illustrated biscuit (click here) uses a few tricks I love. (The click is behind a paywall, but if you follow Cook's Illustrated on Instagram, you can navigate to the recipe just fine by clicking on the link they provide in their Instagram bio.)

The tricks I love include:

  • freezing the butter so you can grate it into the dough
  • trimming the biscuit after resting it (what Cook's recommends to keep it loose and flaky at the edges, and it works like a dream)
  • cutting it square to reduce waste, and
  • using a high-protein flour (they recommend King Arthur brand) which promotes flakiness (instead of fluffiness)

And, as for that sugar, the Cook's biscuit is too sweet for this sandwich. I reduce their suggested 2 T of sugar to just 1 T. But their level of sugar is perfect for a morning biscuit. I just wanted a little less sweetness for my take on the fried chicken on a biscuit. 

Deconstructed Cole slaw

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The other day when I was thinking through today's post, I was making Cole slaw, looking at piles of shredded and Savoy cabbage, and it occurred to me that doing the final assembly into a traditional slaw wasn't really needed. The colors and textures were so gorgeous, and juice and bite of the vegetables so perfect, I knew the fried chicken sandwich was pack even more punch. 

And, hey, it saves a few steps, and I am all about saving you time.

Ingredients for the deconstructed slaw

  • 2 cups shredded red cab
  • 2 cups shredded savoy
  • 3 shallots thinly sliced
  • 2 cups baby kale
  • 3 T chiffonade of basil (or torn) but for the love of all that is beautiful in the world, do not chop the basil

Layer them on the chicken, or loosely combine in a big bowl and then put the desired amount on top of the sandwich.

But what about the dressing? We haven't forgotten that!

Make extra biscuits. Why? Because, after eating this fried chicken on a biscuit sandwich, you will want a continuing relationship that spills over into breakfast, or snacks, or dinner.

Make extra biscuits. Why? Because, after eating this fried chicken on a biscuit sandwich, you will want a continuing relationship that spills over into breakfast, or snacks, or dinner.

Ingredients for the dressing

Either spread this dressing on the chicken, or spread on bun (top, or bottom, or both), or just put it everywhere you want it. 

Mix in a bowl:

  • 1 cup best-quality mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup whipping cream
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Aleppo flake for a little heat, to taste (you'll find you can use more than you might expect, because the heat is enjoyed in the context of fried chicken and all that slaw, and even lettuce and tomato)
  • 1 T of honey

Use the dressing to dress Cole slaw or use as a condiment.

Putting it together

I always have little jars of things I've pickled. Eating your vegetables in pickled form is all kinds of good.

I always have little jars of things I've pickled. Eating your vegetables in pickled form is all kinds of good.

Not rocket science. One option is to let people assemble their own, because everyone has their own opinions on whether this is a slaw sandwich with some chicken, or a chicken sandwich with some slaw, or something unbelievably crunchy all slathered with dressing. 

Consider fresh, best quality tomatoes (room temperature so you can smell them), some butter lettuce, a quick pickle, and some thinly sliced red onion. Or, use pickled red onion or cucumbers that you can make yourself. That delivers bite you'll love with this sandwich. 

Put it on the sandwich, or put it all on a plate so your lunch partners can pick and choose. 

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Everyone will agree on the biscuit though. And the stories they can tell to their friends about this fried chicken on a biscuit sandwich. It sounds like it's a simple tale, but this sandwich is epic. 

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Paul WardComment