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Coca-Cola Brined Fried Chicken

A community recipe by

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The recipe is by John Currence, chef of the City Grocery restaurant in Oxford, Mississippi, and published in the US edition of Esquire magazine, Sept. 2009. The name brought to mind Nigella's ham preparation. The recipe made my mouth water. The result was happily consumed by myself and friends. (I've tried to convert the measurements for our metric using forum members.)


Serves: 6 (or just 4 if they're

For the Chicken

  • 12 chicken thighs (skin on)
  • peanut oil (for frying)

For the Brine

  • 1¾ pints coca-cola
  • 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • 2½ tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon tabasco
  • 3 tablespoons freshly ground pepper
  • 3 tablespoons salt

For the Batter

  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 4 tablespoons freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 2½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg
  • ¾ cup peanut oil
  • 2½ cups water


Coca-Cola Brined Fried Chicken is a community recipe submitted by JonMc and has not been tested by so we are not able to answer questions regarding this recipe.

  • Rinse chicken, drain and set aside. Blend the brine ingredients and stir until salt dissolves. Place chicken in brine and marinate, refrigerated, for four hours. Combine all dry ingredients thoroughly. In a separate bowl, whisk the egg, then whisk in oil and water. Add dry ingredients slowly, whisking gently but thoroughly to avoid lumps. Don't beat it. You're making batter, not bread.
  • Fill a large cast iron skillet half way with equal amounts oil and lard (or just oil, if you must). Gradually bring the temperature up to 375 degrees F/190 Celsius (a candy thermometer helps tremendously). Remove chicken from brine and place in a colander in the sink. Once the chicken has drained, pat all surfaces dry with paper towels, and season with salt and black pepper. Dip chicken in batter and place carefully into hot oil. Dip and fry in batches, don't crowd the pan. How many depands on the size of your pan. Raise the heat under pan, as the chicken will cool it down upon immersion. Bring the oil temp back up to just under 350 F/176 C. Turn regularly with tongs every couple of minutes to prevent burning. After 8 or 9 minutes, remove a piece and prick it to the bone with a toothpick or serving fork, then mash it. If juices run clear, it is done. Continue cooking if not.
  • Drain on a cooling rack in a sheet pan lined with paper towels. Turn the rack over so it rests on the towels. The rack will wick away the oil right into the paper. (A trick I learned from Alton Brown.)
  • Additional Information

    The aroma will drive you nuts, but do let it cool down some. It is also great at room temperature.

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