Sweet Tea Brined Fried Chicken

For moist and flavorful fried chicken, try some special treatment.

John Fleer's Sweet Tea Brined Fried Chicken
John Fleer’s Sweet Tea Brined Fried Chicken

[ingredients-list title=”Ingredients” serving_size=””]

  • 8 chicken leg quarters
  • 1 quart brewed tea, double strength
  • 1 lemon, zested, quartered
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup kosher salt
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour


  • 2 cups masa harina (fine cornmeal)
  • 2 tablespoons Old Bay Seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 quart vegetable oil


[step-list-wrapper title=”How to make it” time=””]

[step-item number=”1″ image_url=”” title=”” ]Mix brine ingredients. Simmer 5 minutes, until sugar and salt dissolve. Add 1 quart ice water. Submerge chicken for 48 hours, refrigerated. Drain.[/step-item]

[step-item number=”2″ image_url=”” title=”” ] Mix flour, masa harina, Old Bay, chili powder, salt and pepper in large bowl. Soak chicken in buttermilk in medium bowl, 2 minutes. Remove, draining off excess liquid. Coat chicken in masa harina mixture. Let sit 30 minutes before frying. [/step-item]

[step-item number=”3″ image_url=”” title=”” ]Heat oil to 325°F. Fry chicken, fully covered in oil, 15 minutes (big pieces may need more time; small pieces, less). Cool; refrigerate overnight. [/step-item]


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Originally Published in Reader's Digest