This post is an answer to a message sent to us by one of our faithful fans, Paulita, who asked us for a Jamaican style fried chicken and potato salad, having tasted some made by a Jamaican lady some years ago. We don’t usually do fried chicken at home or potato salad, but these were favourites of ours growing up. I remember my mother trying to convince me that hers was KFC. Yeah right! It was better! Potato salad is served almost every Sunday in many Jamaican homes, and of course, we have to spice it up! Since we managed to get our hands on some low carb Dixie Carb Counters Breading and Batter Mix from Carboholix, we didn’t feel too guilty about making fried chicken, since there is only 1net carb per serving! And boy did it taste gooooood! Here is what it looks like…
Chicken: 1 whole chicken cut into pieces, 4 stalks scallion/green onions, chopped, 2 cloves garlic, salt, a few dashes of your favourite hot pepper sauce, lots of frying oil (buy high oleic sunflower if you can).
Marinate chicken overnight with everything except the oil.
Batter ingredients: 1 package Dixie Carb CountersBreading and Batter Mix (substitute with all purpose flour), 1tbsp paprika, 2 eggs, 1 cup milk, 1 1/2tsp paprika, a pinch of black pepper and 1/4 tsp allspice.
Potato salad: 3 largish potatoes (ooops, didn’t weigh), 2 eggs, 1/3 cup finely diced green or red capsicum/bell/ sweet peppers, 1/3 cup corn (optional), half stalk finely chopped scallion/green onions, 2-3 tbsp mayonnaise, a pinch of paprika, salt and pepper to taste.
Start off by washing then peeling your potatoes and then cover in room temp water. This will prevent them from changing colour.
Put the water to boil, add salt and washed eggs. You will also cook the the potatoes in this water. Time your eggs for hard boiled eggs and remove from pot when cooked.
Dice your potatoes the same size so that they will cook evenly. Make them roughly 1-inch cubes as shown
Put the them in the boiling water and cook until al dente. You dont want to overcook them. About 10 minutes or so depending on your stove.
Pour oil into your wok or a big and deep pot (not frying pan) and let it get hot. Yeah, we do need a new wok!
In the meantime, whisk the 2 eggs into the milk for the wet bath in a mixing bowl.
In another bowl, empty the breading and batter mix and add about 1tsp paprika.
And a bout a crack or two of black pepper… and combine.
Take the chicken out of the fridge and remove the seasoning from each piece one at a time using one hand only, put a few pieces into the dry mix.
After covering thoroughly in the dry mix, use the other (dry) hand to put it into the wet bath…
Remember this rule: 1 hand wet, 1 hand dry. Keep it this way so as not to get your dry mix all wet.
With wet hand, remove the breaded pieces that you have put in the wet bath and place them back into dry mix. With dry hand, cover again in dry mix and shake.
Do this in batches of about two pieces until you are finished, placing them on a baking sheet for easy access later on.
In the meantime, check the potatoes, taste and pour into a colander to cool.
The oil should be hot now. You want it to be about 375 degrees if you have a kitchen thermometer, if not, just wait until you see it looking really hot. You can test with a small piece of chicken. It is best to use a good frying oil that is capable of being heated to a high temp without being denatured.
If it does this… bubble like crazy, you should be fine… so add more pieces but leave space in the pot so you will fry in about 3 batches.
The white meat pieces will cook in 8-10 minutes while the dark meat pieces will cook in 12-14 mins. This is a nice colour for them. The chef would have preferred if the oil completely covered the chicken but I was hungry and snuck some more in!
The smaller pieces will cook quickly. Take them out and place on a plate with paper towels folded in three pieces across it to soak up excess oil. This will prevent your chicken from tasting greasy.
Once the chicken is done, place in a warm oven (not hot), then chop your red/green capsicum/bell/sweet pepper, thinly slice your scallion/green onions and add your corn, paprika, chopped boiled eggs, mayonnaise, salt, and pepper to taste. Combine with delicate folds. Taste.
Serve and enjoy! Remember to have with a large fresh salad and only a small portion of potato salad. You can get a salad idea here. It is also best to eat higher carb foods like potatoes earlier in the day (like brunch/lunch).
CHEF’S NOTE: Don’t be afraid to spice up things to your own taste. Because something comes with spices, doesn’t mean that you have to stick to the way it came. See how we added paprika and black pepper to the batter mix? Experiment in your kitchen and shake things up a bit and this will make cooking exciting and keep your guests guessing! A recipe is only a guide to making a dish. You should tweak to your taste until you find perfection as defined by your own taste buds!