This week's recipe comes from Chef John Newman. To change one's emotional state of mind by consuming great food is the ultimate goal. This is Chef John's philosophy. John has worked at The Wall at BYU for two and a half years now. Originally from Michigan, Chef John has worked in kitchens from Chicago all the way to Utah. Chef John received a degree in Culinary Arts from Johnson & Wales University. Creating great food with amazing ingredients is what truly makes him happy. Chef John has been recognized from "Best of State" for Gourmet Burgers two years in a row. He has also been awarded top 25 restaurants in the state of Utah while he was the Chef at Communal restaurant. Forbes gave the Tree Room restaurant at Sundance four stars while John was a Chef there. In the end, we all need to strengthen and nourish our bodies with food, we might as well create something tasty and fresh.
2, 3.5-4 lb. chickens, each cut into 10 pieces (breasts halved)
1 tbsp. freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp. plus 4 tsp. kosher salt
4 large eggs
2 C. buttermilk or whole milk
2 tbsp. vinegar-based hot sauce
4 C. all-purpose flour
Vegetable oil (for frying, about 10 cups)
2 tbsp. cayenne pepper
2 tbsp. dark brown sugar
1 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. paprika
White bread slider buns and sliced pickles (for serving)
Toss chicken with black pepper and 2 tbsp. salt in large bowl. Cover and chill at least 3 hours.
Whisk eggs, buttermilk, and hot sauce in a large bowl. Whisk flour and remaining 4 tsp. salt in another large bowl.
Fit a Dutch oven with thermometer, pour in oil to measure 2". Heat over medium-high heat until the thermometer registers 325 F. Pat chicken dry. Working with 1 piece at a time, dredge in flour mixture, shaking off excess, then dip in buttermilk mixture, letting excess drip back into bowl. Dredge again in flour mixture and place on a baking sheet.
Working in 4 batches and returning oil to 325 F between batches, fry chicken, turning occasionally, until skin is deep golden brown and crisp and an instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part of the pieces registers 160 F for white meat and 165 F for dark, 15-18 minutes. Transfer to a clean wire rack set inside a baking sheet. Let oil cool slightly.
Whisk cayenne, brown sugar, chili powder, garlic powder, and paprika in a medium bowl; carefully whisk in 1 C. frying oil. Brush fried chicken with spicy oil. Serve with bread and pickles.
DO AHEAD: Chicken can be seasoned 1 day ahead. Keep chilled.