Fried Chicken and Sea Island Red Peas

Total Time:
26 hr 30 min
45 min
Inactive Prep:
24 hr
1 hr 45 min
4 servings


  • 1 cup kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • Pinch black peppercorns
  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 sprig fresh rosemary
  • Two 3- to 4-pound chickens
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 6 ounces cornstarch
  • 4 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons granulated garlic
  • 2 tablespoons cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • Buttermilk, for soaking chicken
  • Peanut oil, for frying
  • Sea salt


For the chicken and brine: Combine 1 gallon water, the salt, sugar, peppercorns, thyme and rosemary in a pot and stir over medium heat until the salt and sugar are dissolved. Let cool, and then pour the brine over the chickens in a large container. Let brine in the refrigerator for 24 hours.

For the red peas: Combine the peas, stocks, vinegar, garlic, bay leaf, carrots, onions, thyme and some salt and pepper in a pot and bring to a simmer. Cook until the peas are tender, and then stir in the greens until wilted and tender. Stir in the butter right before serving, and season with more salt and pepper if needed.

For the seasoned flour: Mix together the flour, cornstarch, salt, garlic, cayenne, black pepper and nutmeg.

For frying the chicken: Heat 1 inch of peanut oil in a heavy-bottomed skillet to 330 degrees F. Cut each chicken into 8 pieces. Soak in enough buttermilk to coat well, and then toss in the seasoned flour, ensuring that all of the nooks and crannies are covered. Pat off excess flour, and then place the dark meat pieces in the skillet (these need to cook longer than the chicken breast). Fry for 4 minutes, and then add the white meat pieces and cook until chicken has reached an internal temperature of 165 degrees F, turning halfway through. Once done, place the chicken pieces on brown paper bags to remove any excess oil, and season with a sprinkle of sea salt. Serve with the red peas.


This recipe was provided by a chef, restaurant or culinary professional and may have been scaled down from a bulk recipe. The Food Network Kitchens have not it for home use and therefore cannot make any representation as to the results.