A healthier alternative to deep-fried chicken, oven-fried chicken absorbs less oil and results in crispy skin and juicy flesh. In this recipe, fryer chicken pieces are dredged in flour and seasoned with paprika and pepper and cooked in the oven with olive oil and butter. Serve this for healthy dinner on weekdays with some boiled or mashed potatoes for an awesome treat. This also makes a great party food of finger food and will definitely impress your friends and loved ones.
One of the key things to remember when making crispy fried chicken recipe is that the chicken should be dry before it is seasoned and coated in flour and cooked in the oven (or the pan). After washing the chicken pieces under cold water, pat the pieces dry with a paper towel. If you are using frozen chicken, thaw the pieces in the refrigerator for a few hours and then wash them well under cold water and then pat dry with a kitchen towel. Moist chicken skin will not brown well when cooked. It will steam when heated and result in a dull color.
An invaluable tool to have at hand when frying chicken, whether in the oven or the stove, is a kitchen thermometer. The ideal internal temperature of cooked fried chicken is 160 degrees F for the breast and 165 degrees for the thighs and legs. When measuring the internal temperature, stick it in the thickest part of the meat without touching the bone. Allow the chicken pieces to rest after frying so that the juices can redistribute throughout the whole meat. The chicken will also continue cooking and will rise a few points in temperature.
Ingredients: 2 1/2 – 3 lb. fryer chicken pieces, 1/4 cup butter, 1/4 cup olive oil, 1/2 cup flour, 1 tsp. paprika, 1/2 tsp. coarse ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Wash chicken and pat dry with paper towels. Put butter and oil in 13×9 casserole dish. Place dish in oven just long enough to melt the butter. Remove from oven. Mix together flour, paprika and pepper in a bowl. Dredge chicken pieces through the flour, one at a time, and place in casserole dish. Bake chicken 30 minutes. Remove from oven, rotate chicken pieces, and bake an additional 20-30 minutes, or until the thickest chicken pieces are fork-tender.
You can place the chicken pieces in a brown paper bag to cool off and to absorb excess oil. Placing them in a brown paper bag also preserves their crispy texture as they cool off a bit. Paper towels can decrease the crispness of the chicken.