TheScottish immigrantsfrom the southern states of Usa had a tradition of deep-frying chicken pieces in lard and even prior to this they used to fry fritters in the middle ages. The Scrotish migrants would often labor, live and dine with the indentured Africans and this lead to the Africans adding some new spices to the procedure anddevelopingtheir own versionof deep-fried chicken. These Africans later became thefood preparersin many a Southern American house where fried chicken became a prevalent staple.
They also found that it travelled well inwarmweather conditions before refrigeration was commonplace so was enjoyed on almost an every day basis as they walked to the cotton fields to labor. Since then it has become the south's most suitable choicefor just about any occasion.
This is said to have come from a chap named James Boswell who wrote ajournalin 1773 known as “journal of a Tour to the Hebrides”. In his journal he noted that at meals the locals would eat fricassee of pullet which he went on to say “fried chicken or something like that”. What he actually 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 deep-fried chicken we will probably never know but the earliest known mix for deep-fried chicken in English is obscured in one of the most famed cooking books of the 18th century by Hannah Glasse named The Art of cookery Made Plain and Easy. Her process had a strange name named “To Marinate Chickens” which was first available in 1747. The book was a hit in the United kingdom and more importantly in the Usa Colonies.
Here is the original process...
Joint two chickens into quarters; marinate 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 eggsa little melted butter and nutmeg. Beat it all together thoroughly, dip yourfowlsin the batter and fry them in a excellent deal of pork lardwhich must boil first before you put your fowl in. Let them be of a fine browncolour and lay them on your bowl with a garnish of fried parsley. Serve with lemon wedges and a first-class gravy. Nowadays, we have exchanged the hog fat with Rapeseed oil which has 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 procedure has walked worldwide and how different cultures have adopted their own versions.