Fry up a platter of Norah Jones' fried chicken for a taste like Gus's at home.
My sister Debbie is a great cook with a real feel for updated Southern cooking. During a visit with her in Richmond this week, I discovered we had both saved Norah Jones' recipe for fried chicken, printed a few weeks ago in Parade magazine.
The recipe is particularly appealing because Jones has tweaked it to taste like Gus's World Famous Fried Chicken. According to the article, Jones became obsessed with Gus's chicken (who can blame her?) while filming “My Blueberry Nights” in Memphis in 2006. Her recipe soaks the chicken in buttermilk and uses onion powder, garlic powder, cayenne and hot sauce to kick up the more traditional salt and pepper seasoning.
As most chicken lovers in Memphis know, Gus's prides itself on its secret spicy recipe. I was curious to see how Jones' version holds up, so Debbie and I fried up a platter. We were intrigued with the addition of onion rings soaked in buttermilk and tossed in the hot oil along with the chicken.
So how did the chicken taste? Exceptionally good, so click here and bookmark the recipe. The chicken skin, especially the second batch of chicken fried when the oil was sizzling hot, had Gus's trademark crispy crunch. The flavor wasn't quite as spicy, but more seasoning could easily ratchet up the heat.
The onion rings in the dish also added a nice sweet taste and texture, although most of the batter fell off when they were fried. If you are a fried food expert, please pass along any tips for my next try. Would onions sliced thicker hold up better in the pan?