Spicy Oven-Fried Chicken
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup butter -- 2/3 stick
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cracker meal
1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
1 ½ teaspoons garlic salt
1 ½ teaspoons paprika
1 ½ teaspoons ground sage
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
¼ teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
4 pounds chicken pieces
1. Combine the oil and butter in a shallow cooking pan (a jelly-roll pan is perfect) and place in an oven set to 375 degrees to melt. Set aside.
2. In a large paper sack, combine the flour, cracker meal, cornmeal, and seasonings. Roll the chicken pieces, 3 at a time in the melted oil-butter mixture, then drop them in the sack and shake to coat. Place on a dish or wax paper.
3. Place the coated chicken in the pan, skin side down. Bake for 45 minutes, then use a spatula to turn the pieces and bake 5-10 minutes longer, or until the top crust begins to bubble.
Serve hot or cold, but the crust texture is better if the chicken is not refrigerated before eating. If you can afford the calories, the pan drippings make a divine gravy for potatoes or biscuits.
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