- Yield: 4 Servings
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 6 drops hot sauce
- 4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or more to taste
- Vegetable oil, for frying
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole milk
- Generous amount freshly ground black pepper (it should be peppery)
How to Make It
Make the Chicken
- In a medium bowl, combine the buttermilk and hot sauce.
- Rinse the chicken breasts, and pat dry with paper towels. One at a time, sandwich a breast between two sheets of wax paper or plastic wrap. Pound until thin and of even thickness. If you don’t have a meat mallet, pound the breasts with a rolling pin. Add the pounded breasts to the buttermilk, turning to coat them if necessary. Let stand 20 to 60 minutes at room temperature.
- Meanwhile, line a dinner plate or baking sheet with wax paper. To a paper bag, add the flour, salt, and pepper. Shake to mix well. Place the breasts, one at a time, in the paper bag, and shake until coated with the seasoned flour. Place the breasts in a single layer on the lined dinner plate. Let the coating set about 20 minutes. Meanwhile, start the mashed potatoes. Warm a serving platter in a preheated 150° oven. Line another plate with two thicknesses of paper towels, and have it convenient to the stove.
- Heat a Lodge 12-inch cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. When hot, pour in oil to a depth of 1 inch. Heat to 350° to 375°. Slip the breasts into the hot oil. Don’t crowd, or they will stick. Adjust the heat to keep it at an even temperature. Fry the chicken until golden brown, crusty, and crisp on both sides, turning with tongs, about 5 minutes per side. Drain on the paper towels. Transfer the breasts to the warm platter, cover loosely with aluminum foil, and keep warm in the oven while you make the gravy. Make the Gravy
- Pour off all but 3 tablespoons of oil from the skillet. Return the skillet to medium-high heat. Add the flour, and whisk well until the roux is completely smooth, about 1 minute; don’t let it take on any color! Be sure to loosen and scrape up any crusty bits that may be stuck to the bottom of the pan. Slowly add the milk, whisking constantly until there are no lumps. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Reduce the heat to low, and simmer, stirring, until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes.
- To serve, arrange the chicken and a serving of mashed potatoes on 4 dinner plates. Ladle on cream gravy until smothered. Mashed Potatoes
- 4 russet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- ½ cup milk or heavy cream
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Bring a pot of salted water to a boil, drop in the potato chunks, cover, reduce the heat to medium, and cook until a knife easily glides into a potato chunk, 12 to 15 minutes.
- Pour off the water, and return the pot to low heat to dry out the potatoes a bit. Add the butter, milk, salt to taste, and lots of pepper. Whisk by hand or with a handheld electric mixer until smooth. Keep warm until ready to serve.