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Austin Style Hot Chicken Sandwich

Ingredients

Scale

Buttermilk brine & chicken:

1 cup buttermilk (240ml)

2 tsp. salt (8g)

2 tsp. ground black pepper (4g)

2 lbs. uncooked chicken tenders (1kg)

Dry dredge:

1 ½ cup all-purpose flour (312g)

1 ½ cup cornstarch (192g)

2 tsp. salt (8g)

2 tsp. black pepper (4g)

2 tsp. paprika (4g)

2 tsp. baking powder (8g)

Wet dredge:

1 cup water (240ml)

1 egg, well beaten

1 tbsp. Tabasco sauce (15ml)

Peanut oil for frying (about 2-3 qt/lt)

Hot drizzle:

¼ cup Tabasco sauce (60ml)

4 tsp. honey or to taste (20ml)

½ tsp. salt or to taste (2g)

1 ladle leftover chicken frying oil (about ½ cup/120ml)

For sandwiches:

1 loaf Texas toast (thickly sliced white bread or 8 hamburger buns or soft rolls)

Bread and butter pickles

Instructions

Combine the buttermilk, salt and black pepper in a large glass or stainless-steel bowl. Stir to combine well. Place the uncooked chicken in the buttermilk mixture and stir so that the chicken is well coated. Cover with plastic and allow to marinate for at least one hour or overnight in the refrigerator.

Combine the dry dredge ingredients in a shallow dish such as a pie plate. Stir to combine well and set aside.

Combine the ingredients for the wet dredge in a large bowl and stir well. Add ½ cup of the dry dredge mixture and stir until you have a smooth batter.

Remove the chicken tenders from the buttermilk brine. Discard the brine. Allow the chicken tenders to drain briefly on a wire rack placed over a bowl or baking pan, about 10 minutes.

Using a fork, dredge a chicken tender in the dry dredge. Once it is thoroughly coated, dip the coated tender in the wet dredge, completely coating the tender. Return the coated tender to the dry dredge and coat thoroughly again. Place the coated tender back on the wire rack while you continue to coat the remaining tenders in the same fashion.

Once the tenders are coated, prepare your deep fryer. Fill an electric fryer (not an air fryer) or a 4 qt saucepan (4lt) half- full with peanut oil and heat to 350°F (176°C.) Using a fork, carefully place a prepared tender in the heated peanut oil. Fry for 3 minutes. You should be able to fry 4-5 tenders in each batch. After 3 minutes, remove the fried tender to a clean baking pan lined with paper towels or a clean wire rack. Allow to cool for at least 10 minutes.

Double frying will give you extra crispy tenders. Once all of the prepared chicken tenders have been fried and cooled, place the tender again in the hot peanut oil 350°F (176°C) and fry for 3 minutes. Remove once they are cooked and cool briefly before serving.

To make the hot drizzle, place the Tabasco, honey and salt in a heat-proof bowl. Carefully ladle out approximately ½ cup of the hot peanut oil that you used for frying the chicken into the bowl. Stir briefly to combine well. Brush or drizzle the flavored oil over the chicken tenders.

Make sandwiches with the Texas toast (or burger buns/rolls) and bread & butter pickles.