Chef Christina's Buttermilk Fried Chicken

Chef Christina Jones's Buttermilk Fried Chicken + Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce

Serves 2-4 people

On a rare evening, Chef Christina's normally seafood-focused Aquarelle Restaurant would serve up fried chicken. It was, like everything else, absolutely delicious. If you have some time, this dish will be well worth the effort. We love it with our Orange Wine or Semillon.


2 1/2  to 3 pound  whole organic Chicken or 10 small organic whole thighs and legs

For brine:

1 gallon water

1 cup kosher salt

2 lemons, halved

6 bay leaves

1/4 cup honey

3 tablespoons whole pepper corns

2 tablespoons curry powder

6 cloves garlic, smashed

6 sprigs of fresh thyme

6 sprigs of Italian parsley, roughly chopped

Combine all ingredients in a large pot. Heat and stir until salt is dissolved. Chill completely before brining chicken.

For frying: 

Peanut or canola oil

For dredging

1 quart buttermilk

Salt and pepper to taste

For coating: 

3 cups flour

2 tablespoons granulated garlic

2 tablespoons onion powder 

2 teaspoons paprika

2 teaspoons kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon ground pepper


Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce:

1/4 Cup Dijon Mustard

4 Tablespoons Mayonnaise

3 Tablespoons Honey

Salt to taste



If you’re using a whole chicken, cut into 10 pieces: 2 legs, 2 thighs, 4 breast quarters and 2 wings.


To brine the chicken, combine all of the the ingredients and stir until the salt is dissolved. Put in large 

bowl/container and make sure chicken pieces are fully covered with brine. Refrigerate overnight, at least 8-12 hours. 


Remove chicken from brine, rinse under cold water. Pat dry. Let chicken come to room temp, for an hour. 

In a large pot, fill with at least 2 inches of oil, or enough to fully cover chicken. Heat until 320°.


Combine the first four coating ingredients in one bowl. Combine buttermilk and salt+pepper in a separate bowl.


Just before frying: Dip chicken pieces in buttermilk, and then in flour mixture. 


Fry for 12 minutes or so until golden brown. 


*Chef's note: if pieces need more cooking inside, bake in 425° oven for 10 minutes.


For dipping sauce: add all ingredients and whisk together. Adjust to taste.