TheScottish immigrantsfrom the southern states of Usa had a tradition of deep-frying poultry in fat and even further back they used to fry fritters in the middle ages. The migrants from Scotland would often work, live and eat with the African slaves and this lead to the Africans adding some supplementary flavorings to the recipe andproducingtheir own interpretationof crispy fried chicken. These Africans later went on to become thechefsin many a Southern American family where crispy fried chicken became a prevalent staple. They also observed that it lasted well well inhottemperatures prior to refrigeration was prevalent so was consumed on almost every day basis as they travelled to the cotton fields to work. Since then it has become the southern state's preferred choicefor just about any occasion.
This is said to have come from a male named James Boswell who wrote arecordin 1773 known as “log of a Tour to the Hebrides”. In his log he noted that at dinner the locals would eat fricassee of hen which he went on to say “fried chicken or something like that”. What he in fact heard was the Scottish dish Friars Chicken, not deep-fried chicken but you could say that where it was first named.
The very true origins of crispy deep-fried chicken we will probably never know but the earliest known procedure for crispy fried chicken in English is obscured in one of the most notable culinary books of the 18th century by Hannah Glasse named The Art of culinary Made Plain and Easy. Her procedure had a strange name named “To Marinate Chickens” which was first in print in 1747. The book was a success in the United kingdom and more importantly in the US Colonies.
Here is the original procedure...
Joint two chickens into quarters; lay them in vinegar for 3-4 hours with pepper, salt, bay and a few cloves. Make a very thick batter first with ½ pint of wine and flour then the yolks of two eggssome melted butter and nutmeg. Beat it all together thoroughly, dip yourchicken piecesin the batter and fry them in a good quality deal of hogs lardwhich must boil first before you put your fowl in. Let them be of a fine browncolour and set them on your bowl with a garnish of fried parsley. Serve with lemon wedges and a good gravy. Now, we have changed the hog fat with Rapeseed oil which features nearly zero trans fats and we use a brine of buttermilk and salt to season our chicken throughout. It’s amazing to think how far this process has walked worldwide and how different cultures have adopted their own versions.