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Fried Chicken and Sweet Potato Waffles


For the chicken:

1 cup whole buttermilk

6 tablespoons kosher salt

2 tablespoons hot sauce

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

2 tablespoons granulated garlic

2 teaspoons onion powder

1½ teaspoons red pepper flakes

1 (4-pound) whole chicken, cut into 8 pieces

5 cups vegetable oil

Seasoned flour (recipe follows)

Maple syrup

For the waffles:

1 medium sweet potato

¼ teaspoon blended olive oil

2 cups flour

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 cup whole milk

½ cup whole buttermilk

⅓ cup butter, melted

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

½ teaspoon maple extract

2 large eggs

Special equipment: Belgian waffle iron

“It’s nice to have something sweet with fried chicken that’s not honey. The maple gives this dish a more concentrated sweetness.” Richards prefers to brine all birds before cooking for the best flavor and texture. Note that brining takes at least 12 hours.


1. Brine the chicken:In a large bowl, stir together 4 cups water, buttermilk, salt, hot sauce, sugar, and spices; add the chicken pieces to the brine. Refrigerate for at least 12 hours and up to 28 hours. 2. Make the waffles:Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Rub sweet potato with oil and bake until tender, about 40 minutes. Remove from oven and cool for 20 minutes. Preheat a Belgian waffle iron according to manufacturer’s instructions. In a medium bowl, stir together dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, combine wet ingredients. Peel and mash sweet potato, and stir into milk mixture. Stir milk mixture into dry ingredients. Pour about ½ cup batter onto hot waffle iron, and cook according to manufacturer’s instructions. 3. Make the chicken:In a deep cast-iron skillet fitted with a deep-fry thermometer, heat oil over medium heat. Remove chicken from brine and let any excess liquid drip off; discard brine. Dredge chicken in seasoned flour to coat; add to the hot oil, one  piece at a time. Cook, turning every few minutes until golden and a meat thermometer registers 165 degrees. Drain on paper towels. Serve chicken on waffles with maple syrup.

Seasoned Flour

Makes about 2 ½ cups

Store in an airtight container in the freezer, where this will keep for months.

2 cups flour 2 tablespoons kosher salt

1 tablespoon coarsely ground black pepper 1½ tablespoons granulated onion 1 tablespoon granulated garlic 1 tablespoon chili powder 1 teaspoon curry powder 1 teaspoon ground ginger

In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients.
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