Haitian Fried Chicken

Dachenie Ganthier, Contributing Writer

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Fried chicken is many people’s favorite food, including mine. This is a recipe for Haitian fried chicken, which is different than American fried chicken because of the different types of seasoning and the cooking methods we use.

Homemade fried chicken is better than the fried chicken you get at restaurants because it is so much healthier—you control the kind and amount of seasoning you put in your food.

It is really simple to make Haitian fried chicken, and it can be eaten with anything, but pairing it with some fried plantains and pikliz is especially delicious. If you want to learn how to make pikliz or fried plantains, go to my Famous Haitian Griot recipe to see the recipes for these side dishes.

 

Epis

Ingredients:

1 medium onion

½ bell pepper (green or red)

3 cloves of garlic

1 bunch of scallions

Few leaves of parsley

Pepper

Directions:

To make the epis, blend all the ingredients until the mixture forms a paste.

Epis is the base seasoning in most Haitian dishes!

 

The Fried Chicken

Ingredients:

10 chicken drumsticks

4 cups of any kind of oil

2 scotch bonnet peppers (also called Caribbean red peppers)

4 limes

Salt

A branch of thyme

3 sour oranges (also called Seville oranges and marmalade oranges)

Epis

Directions:

For my fried chicken, I use 10 drumsticks, but feel free to use any parts of the chicken and double or triple the ingredients for a bigger crowd.

Before you start anything, boil 8 cups of water. Put your chicken in a large bowl, either cut into pieces or left whole. Then, cut your limes and oranges in half. Squeeze the juices from both the limes and oranges all over the chicken.

Scrub the chicken with the leftover lime and orange parts. Add half a palmfull of salt over the chicken. Let the chicken sit for at least 10-20 minutes. Then, rinse your chicken and add the water you boiled earlier.

Let the hot water sit in the chicken for at least 3 minutes. Then, take the chicken out and place it into a large bowl.

After you add all your chicken, add the epis that you blended earlier into the chicken and mix it really well. Let it sit for 5-10 minutes so that the seasoning can get to the meat.

Add 2 cups of water, the branch of thyme, and the 2 scotch bonnet peppers (if you want your fried chicken spicy, chop the scotch bonnets, but if you want a more mild flavor, leave the peppers whole) to the pan and simmer for 30 minutes until the water evaporates.

Then the moment we’ve all been waiting for: the deep frying. Heat up a deep fry pan for 30 seconds to a minute, then add just enough oil to be able to deep fry the chicken.

Let the oil heat up for 2-3 minutes and add as many chicken parts into the pan as can fit. Fry them for 5 minutes or until they are crispy. Congrats, you have made Haitian fried chicken. Now that you made your delicious meal, eat it and enjoy.

 

This piece also appears in our May 2019 print edition.